The Aresan Clan is published four times a week (Tue, Wed, Fri, Sun). You can see what's been written so far collected here. All posts will be posted under the Aresan Clan label. For summaries of the events so far, visit here. See my previous serial Vampire Wares collected here.

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Vampire Wares pt 6

Andrei always disliked closing his shop during business hours and it was with some discomfort that he locked the front door, pushing it shut while the sign “Apothecary and Vampire Wares” swung back and forth. He told the blacksmith next door, Cornel, who was pounding away at his metals, that he would be back in some fifteen or so minutes, if anyone came by.  Then he walked over to the town hall.

Andrei entered the great double doors at the front of town hall.  In front of him opened the meeting hall, which was now empty.  It was a large room with rows of wood benches and an elevated stage in front.  There were two private rooms off to the side that could be entered from here and Andrei knocked on the first of these doors.  The door opened and the round, red-cheeked face of Beniamin, Andrei’s secretary peaked through.  He wore a brown, ostentatiously curly wig and always had a pleasant smile.  “Yes?” he asked inquisitively.

“If I could kindly insist, to Magistrate Lucian, that I be permitted to enter, I would be much obliged.  I think I have a right to listen in on whatever negotiations you’re engaged in with these vampires, as a citizen of this village and an interested party.”

Beniamin opened the door a bit more and turned to reveal Lucian seated in the dark, looking at Andrei.  Lucian spoke up in his well-measured tone: “This is only a preliminary meeting, Andrei.  We will be sure and apprise you of the content of this meeting once we have finished.  Be assured that you will be the first person I will speak to.”

“We have nothing to hide,” Asha then shouted out in her snake-like voice, “Bring in whomever you wish.  They can listen so long as they don’t speak.”

Beniamin shrugged his shoulder cheerfully and said to Andrei, almost apologetically, “Could you please close the main doors there before you come in,” pointing to the double doors leading into town hall, “We have to be careful of the light.”

After closing the doors, Andrei stepped into the office.  “Are you sure it’s safe in here?  We’re not going to get infected?” Andrei asked.  Both Lucian and Asha nodded, but Andrei, still shrank into a corner as far as possible away from the vampires.

The office that Lucian occupied had an elegant wood desk upon which Lucian would do his writing and behind him an entire bookshelf of finely bound books.  In one corner a globe served as decoration, along with some oil paintings framed on the walls. But the whole room was immediately plunged into near blackness as soon as Beniamin closed the doors.

A single candle sat on Lucian’s desk and the faintest traces of light leaked underneath the door.  There was a window, but the curtains were closed, such that only an outline of light also leaked in around the edges.

In the darkness the five vampires were allowed to reveal their faces.  They pulled back their hoods, revealing their heads, which were entirely wrapped in a partly see-through piece of black cloth.  After removing the cloth, five stunning, pale faces were revealed, two female and three male.  All of the faces were young-looking, flawless, sharp and colorless.  They weren’t beautiful in the way that Andrei normally thought, since they lacked the round, pink skin that Andrei would’ve preferred in a beautiful bride.  But they were, all five of them, gorgeous—like a whiter, more angular version of a youthful belle in full bloom.

But when Andrei saw them expose their faces he recoiled instinctively and rose to leave the room.  Asha understood what Andrei was afraid of, and said vehemently, “There is no risk of infection.  If you want to listen, you will sit down.”  Andrei felt naked without the mask he normally wore to protect him and uncomfortably swallowed as he thought he was picking up the faint whiff of Asha’s aroma.

Asha then turned to Lucian and continued, “We have come to discuss a truce between the vampires of our coven and the surrounding villages,” rehashing what had been said for Andrei’s sake.

<-- Go to Part 5         Go to Part 7 -->

You can see what's been written so far collected here.

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