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, May 15, 2012

Vampire Wares pt 78

Lina ran back into the kitchen and quickly closed and locked the door to the pen.  She dropped the key into Tor's pocket, just as he began to move about, reaching up to touch his aching head.

Instead of trying to disappear before he saw her, Lina decided that it would be better to attempt some more misdirection.  She leapt onto the counter and started eating from the pot of the special vampire brew that'd been made for Asha.  She figured the consequences for knocking Tor out and stealing some food would be much more modest than freeing a human, and she hoped that Tor wouldn't be in as much of a hurry to chase after a girl who'd only stole a little bit of vampire brew.  When Tor opened his eyes, the first thing he saw was Lina, gulping spoonfuls from the pot of vampire brew.  He groggily asked, “Lina?” which she took as her signal to depart.

She ran into the hall, picking up the basket, running up the stairs to her room and closing the door behind her.  She'd passed a few vampires in the hall, who didn't give a second thought to a young vampire taking a basket from the cache into her room, but she was worried that this large basket would become suspicious if she tried to carry it further.

Lina opened the basket and lifted Nicoleta out.  “I'm getting you out of here,” Lina told Nicoleta “If we don't get caught.”

Lina then pulled out her outdoor clothes, her cloak, head-covering, boots and gloves.  She started to put them on, reserving the cloak for last, and told Nicoleta, “Now hold onto my back.”  Nicoleta hopped onto Lina’s back, piggyback style, her arms wrapped around Lina’s neck, her legs wrapped around Lina’s stomach.  Lina then put on the cloak to cover both of them.

She checked herself out in the mirror, the thick, flowing coat was a very effective cover and hid Nicoleta quite thoroughly from the front.  On the other hand, if someone saw her from behind or from the side, it was clear she had a massive bulge protruding from her back.  The dim light of the cave would probably help her, but she’d have to do what she could to hide her back side.  That no one at all would notice the huge bulge on her back seemed unlikely, but she didn’t have any time to think up a better solution.  Vampires may already be looking for her, and the first place they would look is her room.

She stepped out into the hall, looking both ways and seeing no one immediately in sight.  Walking quickly but in a way that didn’t look hurried, she walked towards the great hall.  When she stepped inside, she saw an unusually high number of vampires lounging around.  The beams of light that pierced through the ceiling illuminated the room, and Lina felt immediately exposed.

But she kept on moving forward, trying to angle herself to keep her back side out of sight of the vampires.  She slowly climbed the stairs and moved towards the ramp.  A few vampires looked in her direction and their eyes lingered on her longer than a casual glance.  If nothing else, it was unusual to see a vampire heading surface-ward during the daylight hours, and they perceived that something about Lina was unusual.

Lina though, didn’t give them enough time to intervene, moving quickly into the shadows of the ramp and up towards the wooden door.

She pounded on the door and the guard opened up and looked through.  He looked down at her with a wary look, asking her, “You’re going outside again?  Wasn’t once enough for you?”

“I won’t do it again for a while, I swear.  Just a short jaunt outside,” she pleaded.

He looked at her as if he didn’t want to let her through, but he conceded and waved her through, saying, “Come on.”

But as he was about to close the door, a shout emerged from below, “Is Lina here?  Have you seen her?”

Another voice answered immediately, “She just went up the ramp a minute ago.”

<-- Go to Part 77         Go to Part 79 -->

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

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