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.

Friday, April 6, 2012

Vampire Wares pt 56

Vasile and Anton gazed in the direction of the sound of the approaching vampires impatiently, until, after many long seconds, four indistinct shapes appeared through the leaves and the darkness.  The vampires moved with their characteristic swiftness, and between them a captured prey swung back and forth.

“Damnit!” Vasile quietly whispered when he saw there were four and they had a prisoner in tow.  Vasile lowered the crossbow in frustration.  Four vampires was too risky, especially if it was for only one victim.  Additionally, he couldn’t help feeling they’d gotten lucky when they’d attacked the group of four vampires a few nights before.  He didn’t want to tempt fate again.  As he’d told himself many times, the only way a vampire hunter could survive was by playing it safe.

Anton saw Vasile lowering his weapon and offered a quizzical look in the darkness.  All Vasile could do was shake his head and indicate for Anton to lower his weapon too.

They watched the party approaching, and pass by almost right beneath them.  Vasile clenched his teeth to hold back his irritation.

As the group of vampires passed, though, Anton could finally see the face of the person that was in the net.  She was facing backwards and, and Anton could clearly see his sister Constanta, being taken by the vampires to almost certain death.

Constanta tried unsuccessfully to hold back her tears with all her might as she watched the forest retreating behind her.  She managed to keep herself quiet, but truth was she was completely petrified.  Then, out of nowhere, with a suddenness that caused her to start, she saw movement from out of shadows high in the tree, and a streak of color flashing in her direction.  An arrow lodged itself into the upper thigh of, Ela, the vampire next to her.  As Ela faltered and started to trip, Constanta was tossed about inside her net.  Another quick flash of color and an arrow was lodged in Bai, the vampire to the other side of her.  Though Bai winced with profound pain, he didn’t falter and continued to run.

Then Constanta saw falling from the tree a human shape that dropped to the ground, raised a bow and arrow, and in a blink lodged another arrow in Ela’s buttock.  Ela this time didn’t just falter, but fell.  Bai completely took Constanta from Ela’s grasp and reached out a hand to help Ela.  Picking herself up, Ela continued, but the arrows didn’t stop.

From his vantage point in the tree, Vasile was able to place a crossbow bolt in Ela’s side, thinking they might finally take her down, but Ela continued, undeterred, though deeply wounded.  The failure to bring Ela down and free the prisoner was more frustrating than Vasile could take.  Out of pure spite, he decided to hit at their most vulnerable spot, the small vampire that rode on Sim’s back.  It was clear to him that she was a vampire, and just as clear that she was newly initiated and thus preeminently vulnerable.  So he put a crossbow bolt as close to her neck as he could, landing it high in the center of her shoulder.  The bolt pierced so deeply through her that it poked Sim, just before he felt a moist cough spew from Lina’s mouth.

This attack on Lina compelled Sim to turn and face his attackers.  He pulled Lina from his back, wounded and bleeding, and he handed her to Tam.  Tam gingerly cradled her in his arms, and kicked up a flurry of dust as he sped away.  Ela and Bai were on Tam’s heals, limping along, but still alive.  But Sim, immediately seeing Anton with bow and arrow in hand and poised, ran towards him.  Anton had time to fire one arrow, lodging it in Sim’s shoulder, before Sim was on top of him.  Sim choked Anton’s neck while he beat his head to the ground.

With Anton’s consciousness quickly fading, Sim hurried to lean in and begin to macerate Anton’s neck before all is life went dark.  But just then, arrows started to rain from the sky.  Vasile was reloaded with two bolts and placed them both in Sim’s body, one quickly after the other.  The first one landed just as the base of his neck, and the second landed high in his neck and pierced through below his chin.  Blood spurted out of Sim onto Anton who was below him

The debilitating pain of this latter wound, made Sim cry out a squeal of pain.  The agony of the wound sapped his will to fight as energy drained out of him, and he let Anton go.  But he wasn’t ready to die.  Sim leapt up to the ground and ran.  Moments later, two more crossbow bolts pierced his left buttock and right thigh, but he was blind to this pain now, and simply ran, directly aiming for the coven.

When he entered into the coven, arrows sticking out of him in every direction, blood pouring down in long rivulets down his chest and back, his vampire comrades stood back stunned, immediately grabbing him to have his wounds tended.  But all he wanted was to know an answer to his one question: “Is Lina alright?”

<-- Go to Part 55         Go to Part 57 -->

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

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