Dreadfully Simple

by

Daniele Marx

Allison stood over a single cross which had been placed at the head of two large piles of dirt and stone. She wore a dress of light black and white cloth, her tears drier in her hazel eyes as they had been emptied of all emotion. She remained in a silent void of nothingness. They had been her only living relatives in this horrible world, this life which had been stripped of all happiness while her heart ached with death and suffering, pain and sorrow. It was a sad time, the present, where creatures of myth and legend lingered in the night as a name of horrifying origin lingered on ones' tongue. The shadows were not safe, nor were the open spaces during the day. Creatures lurked at night, causing rules of towns to change for these purposes: do not leave your homes after sundown; do not open your doors to strangers; do not wander the wood during the night. These were few of many rules, vows, to protect one's family or loved ones.

The girl dared not move, hoping the events were not real as she stood there alone at almost dusk. Tears streamed down her face as she remembered the events which had taken place over the past weeks. There was a riot against her family. They had strung her and her parents up against the anger and hatred of themselves because of this invisible force. Someone had taken control of the villager's minds and turned them against one single family. The men stood firmly behind the three, rifles in hand as their booted feet sat against the hanging block, ready to push it out from under them. Her parents were begging for their life. Allison had just stood there, confused as everyone they cherished in friendship betrayed them. She knew they had no reason to hate for her family had always been kind to everyone who had settled in their midst. Her eyes pleaded with everyone who glared at her, spat at her, yelled at her. There was no hope for them but she continued to plead with only her eyes, searching for a kind face, a kind word. She suddenly saw a man in the shadows of the grocer's building, his facial expression blank as he silently stood in black attire and watched her.

She remained in eye contact with him--she'd never seen him before now--until she felt the men push the blocks abruptly out from underneath the three. She fell to the ground as she heard the rope snap from above and land by her like a dead serpent. There were screams of terror as she watched her mother and father hanging limply from the cords around their neck, and felt the rope loosen around her own. The people around her, her friends who had been with her since the day of their birth, all looked frightened, white, as they looked down at her. It was as if they had been in a trance, and they had just shaken it off. Allison had a sudden surge of fear, and waves of inescapable tears overcame her. Her long brown hair fell over her eyes and shoulders as she brought her knees up to her chest, weeping into her arms.

It had taken days to stop crying, her heart broken as all she had ever loved had been taken from her with such a force. Her friends had tried to speak with her but even if they had gotten into her home, they could not have gotten a response out of her. She had been following the town rules in her own heart, feeling as though everyone she knew were strangers; she simply could not trust them. They had offered their condolences, then left. She hadn't eaten for days. Time had passed slowly. The villagers had buried her parents in the cemetery, which was plotted by several generations of villagers; her family had been buried in the center with a large cross at the head which was made from pieces of wood which were carved to perfection by a boy her age, Aaron, who had been her best friend at one time. Even his company wasn't welcome in her heart at the time. He made the best companion to her before, and there was something wrong now. When he had strung her up, she had gone so numb.

The dread her heart felt ached to no end. She stood there at her parent's gravestones, entranced once again as she licked her pale lips. She was weak as ever, and the villagers left her alone now to mourn her loss. The sun lowered itself behind the distant horizon, leaving the sky violet and gold. Allison took no notice of it, but continued to stare at the graves which had darkened greatly since she had arrived. There was a chill in the night air it seemed, colder than usual. She was being watched. They had died quickly. There had not been mercy. Why did she have to live? Why was she plagued with life? She wished she could just disappear, fade away, be anything but alive. Her attention was distracted as she heard footsteps behind her. Willing herself not to move, she didn't feel her attention tear away from the graves, from the piles of dirt before her. The footsteps came nearer as she heard someone speaking to her, not so loudly to distract her, but with a soft disposition like the wind.

"Who's there?" Her voice was but a whisper in reply as she remained still. The footsteps slowed down, and they were right behind her. Turning quickly around, she met the same cold eyes that had remained emotionless throughout the riot. Those eyes were darker than she thought they were. When she'd come to rest upon his gaze in the chaos, she became calmer. Then she was freed from the quick death. The man stood above her, his long black hair behind him as he stared through her. She dared not to move in case he attacked. She was afraid to breathe. He was adorned in black, his face smooth and free of any blemishes that would show him ugly. He was far from that. He was beautiful, enchanting. Allison felt his hand come up and touch her face, making her stiffen and stare at him wide eyed. The touch of his hand sent chills down her spine, and the corner of his mouth turned up in a dry smirk as his eyes revealed amusement. He spoke slowly, no louder than a whisper as if he knew it would shatter the night if he did so.

"Allison, I have searched far for one small glimpse of your perfection. Lo and behold, tragedy brings us together. . . " Allison felt fear strike her again, but she pushed it down. His silky voice, his radiance was beyond any she had ever encountered before in her life. She must speak to hide her fear. There was something about this man that made her silent.

"Who are you. . . " The man's eyes flashed slightly of desire, and she gasped, trying to step away from him but being unsuccessful against her frozen limbs. But he brought her hand into their view.

"My name," he kissed her pale skin and watched her eyes try to read his. "Is Viktor. I offer my condolences for your loss. . . " His eyes suddenly flashed with malice, and Allison only stared. He didn't release her hand as he stared back into her eyes.

"I thank you." Viktor smirked evilly, and let her hand go, his eyes flashing gold. Allison didn't care to look away. She was being beckoned to obey him, only him. She almost wanted to fight, but her body had gone numb. Viktor's arm had snaked around her waist, and he continued to stare into her eyes, not moving. She felt dazed as he brought her closer to him, and felt his soft lips touch hers. Her arms laying limply behind her as he tipped her back, the black cape he wore covered her body with his own, and she felt her hands come up to rest on his upper arms as his kiss became deeper, his lips urging hers open slightly. She felt his kiss end, and felt his hot searing lips make like a trail down her neck. When she felt as if heaven had come upon her, she felt something pierce her neck, and she tried to jolt backwards, only to find herself being held forcefully by Viktor's arm, which was still wrapped securely around her waist. Her hands were trying to push him away, but to no prevail. She felt the pain come quickly, and red overcame her immediate sight, making her shut her eyes, trying to block out the horrible feeling, but unable to. She began to fade away, and he jolted her as if he were almost done. His lips touched her neck, and he came into her blurring vision to see her, his penetrating black eyes staring lustily into hers.

"You are mine. . . " And with that last coo, he picked her up into his arms, letting her head rest on his shoulder as her arms fell limply over her side. He covered her body with his cape, and disappeared into the night.

Allison opened her eyes, feeling so weak that she could not bear to open her eyes. Was she dead? She couldn't forget Viktor's eyes as they gazed lustily into hers. It was dark, silent as she attempted to listen for someone who could help her. She felt her senses open up, and she smelled the air. It smelled of staleness, mold, something else. She knew this smell so well. It haunted her senses ever since her parents' downfall. Death. If she were dead, would she be thinking though. She felt hungry, not for bread or meat, but for something else. Her heart was still, and she felt so cold. She shivered, and she heard footsteps calmly walking towards her in the darkness. She knew who it was, and she froze, bracing herself for the worst, but there was a pause as she watched the darkness disappear. There was Viktor, illuminated in candlelight, staring down at her lustily. She wasn't sleeping in the dark, but some sort of box. Before she could react, she smelled something irresistible, something delicious. It made her hungrier than she already was. He brought her upper body into view of the room. Her eyes opened, and all she could see was red. Even the candlelight was red in her sight. Viktor remained above her, and she saw his neck. He was offering it to her. "Drink." She knew what to do, and her eyes were still red. Her lips touched his mildly salty nape, and she felt fangs grow from her two teeth outside of her eye teeth. She plunged them into his skin as gently as she could without devouring him.

His blood tasted to sweet, so exquisite, and she drank from him, filling herself jovially. Pulling out, she licked her lips as he smirked down at her, his eyes glowing by the flames emitted from the candles that had been placed around the room strategically to get the full effect of brilliance which made her eyes open wide in admiration. She watched Viktor, feeling more alive than she had ever felt before. It was exhilarating, and she felt her heart soar with appreciation and love for Viktor. She looked back to him, and smiled evilly.

"Viktor, thank you for this. I can't explain this feeling. I don't know how to repay you..." She felt him wrap his arm around her waist, and his lips met hers, both feeling complete bliss. It was long before they parted, and her eyes felt glazed over.

"Be mine for eternity."

"Always..." And with that, they kissed once again.

"I have one gift more for you, my dearest." He looked into a dark corner, and her gaze followed.

"What is it?" She said with awe.

"Go and see." Allison stared into the corner, only able to make out a dark figure standing in the shadows as if it were tied to a stake. When she got closer, she saw Aaron Kinney standing in fear before her. Her eyes had begun to see red again, and she smiled in awe, looking into his frightened eyes. He looked beaten, his face bleeding from a scrape that looked as if he had been thrown across a stone floor and rammed into a wall. Her eyes flashed momentarily, but her urge was a great deal stronger than the feeling.

"Hello, Aaron." Her voice came out in a hiss, and she touched his face, feeling a spark of excitement course through her. The urge got stronger, and she saw immediate red, making her fangs grow in again. His green eyes were horrified, frozen. That only made her compelled to move faster. She wasn't sure how to handle the situation at first, and felt Viktor behind her, so close, so warm. His hands trailed down her arms, and he raised her hands with his own, resting them at Aaron's nape, showing her where his pulse was, then putting two of her fingers on where to put her fangs.

"To kill, drain here. You can taste death when you find it." He led her hands to another spot on Aaron's neck, which was right next to where the death point was, and pressed her two fingers into the skin as he had before. "To create, drain here. In order to fully create, add your own blood the next night. Choose wisely."

"This one was one of those who killed my mother and father. They deserve to pay. Dearly. . . " She put her fingers over his eyes, and lightly slid them down his face, her neck bent slightly to the right as she smiled evilly. Viktor's hands didn't leave her waist from behind as his hands rested on her sides. Allison grabbed Aaron's hair from behind his head, and she pulled his head to his left, revealing his nape. Licking her lips, she revealed her fangs, and pinpointed her destination, directly on the pulseline. Aaron quaked from fear, and Allison watched his eyes close tightly because of her, making her smile and plunge her fangs into the open skin roughly, hearing him let out a cry of agony as she sucked the life out of him. Aaron struggled against her, and was held down by Viktor. Her craving renewed itself, and she drank hungrily, taking as much as she wanted before the cry stopped, and withdrew herself from his skin, licking her lips, satisfied. The scent of blood lingered in the air, and she turned to meet Viktor's approving look, meeting his lips with her own.

(present day)

"AAH!" screamed a girl, waking up with a sweat and tear drenched face. She stopped her cries, and began breathing laboriously, holding her head in her hands as she turned over to her other side, her long hair cascading over her eyes. Tasting blood on her lips, she almost jumped until she realized it was just because she bit her lip so hard she cut herself. Looking at her clock as soon as she regained her composure somewhat, she noticed that it was twenty past midnight. That horrible dream again, she thought, the memories remaining sharply on her brain. It looked like me. Who was he, that man who. . . The young woman searched her mind, trying to find an explanation. Why did she have this dream, why was she aching inside as if she had lost someone important in her life. "I have everything I need in life! I have no reason to have weird dreams and stay up at all hours at night. Why can't I sleep during the night instead of during the day." She rubbed the bridge of her nose, irritated. "Answers don't come to those who wait. . . They come to those who look for them. I am not looking for anything like That. Stop thinking so much." Without much balance, the sixteen year old girl got up and wobbled over to her bathroom. She was wide awake. Too bad she didn't feel the same during the day.

Everyday, it felt, she was always so tired, and the sun irritated her eyes as if she had sun burnt them, then she was always so pale. Then, every time she felt the urge to eat something, she couldn't find anything to strike her nerve. She even went to the twenty four hour grocery store to find something, but then she would wander into the foods section, and the only thing she could find was fresh meat. Fresh, juicy, raw meat. She could eat normal food, but it irritated her stomach. It didn't even look like she wanted to eat the meat when she cooked it, but she would always squeeze the juice out of it, trying to drain it of all the blood before she ate it, but then she would find herself wanting to drink the juice instead. She felt weird whenever she saw a person walk by, all clean-shaven and, if they had long hair, their hair pulled back in a ponytail so their necks were uncovered. Why would someone's neck make her so hungry? First she figured it was hormones, but then again, she knew she wasn't gay or lusting at the time. Her lips would dry and she would lick them, smelling blood. Blood. The thought of blood made her hungry, but there were no such things as vampires, were there? She had to be sick. The young woman decided to watch some TV and look for something to eat, hopefully she wouldn't have a weird temptation for the one thing she didn't think she could stomach.

With her seventeenth birthday coming up within the next few weeks, she was arranged a doctor appointment. She couldn't go to Europe with any sicknesses, that was for sure. She was barely ever sick, but this time she the depression hit her deeply, so she felt it would be wise to look into remedies that could stop the feeling. Her foster parents were worried about her, therefore they decided action would be best.

Walking into the square waiting room of the office building, she sat down in the not quite full room and waited for her name to be called. Near her, there was a small boy with flaming red hair quietly playing with a 'Mr. Potato Head' game, his mother, red-haired as well, watching him worriedly. The teenager watched the mother, and suddenly felt her sadness. The boy had an ear infection, a really bad one. She didn't know how she knew, the information came to her. Next to the little boy on a chair next to his mother sat a little girl with the same color of hair sitting quietly; she had a rag to her ear, holding it there and almost sobbing. Another ear infection, worse than the boy's. They were twins, and they seemed to be able to lock in on the other's condition. Looking over to the other side of the room, she saw a man sitting with his face in a magazine which was about personal health, and felt his problem flowing into her. Heart problem. He was worried about needing surgery. Another group in the room was a couple, man and woman. From the way they sat, which was quite nervously, she guessed they were going to have a baby. Too bad they didn't know it yet. She was probably having some unusual reactions to food and couldn't stop throwing up in the morning. She felt herself staring at them harder than the others.

"Allison Thatcher," said a nurse, who just entered the room with a clipboard and a bright uniform which had prints of colorful elephants on it while she wore white stirrup pants. Allison stood up and walked through the hallway with the woman. "Third door to your left." The nurse cared more about her attire than her patients; a loss of confidence in the system. Allison noted this and the nurse left her; she watched the happy woman walk away, and caught herself looking at the woman's exposed nape. She didn't catch herself, though, when she licked her lips unconsciously. Turning her gaze, her expression changed to a malicious glare, and she cursed herself. For a moment, she almost saw red, and red was not her favorite color.

Sitting down on the examination bed, she waited for the good doctor. It was very boring, the examination room. The only things that seemed to bring color to the room was a picture of a forest scene, where there was a tall stone structure in the distance, and a poster of the human breathing system and its veins. This somehow made her stand up, and approach the picture. The 'person' was facing forward, and Allison stared at the picture, bringing up her hand to trail the veins. The combination of red and blue made it look more entertaining she guessed, and her fingers stopped as they trailed one vein in particular up to the neck, where there was an intersection of a vein and an artery. Pressing her forefinger and middle finger apart onto the spot she put them a bit to the side of them where just the vein remained, and put her fingers in a similar place there. Her mouth began to water and she shut her eyes as she started to see red, pulling her fingers away awkwardly as she heard the door open abruptly. Her ears began to hurt and she covered them up, forcing the feeling down. "Miss Thatcher, are you okay?" the doctor asked. Allison shook the feeling away, and then looked up, the red gone.

"Um, yeah..." The doctor was a man, his short hair brown as his blue eyes seemed to show he cared. Well, she thought. If he cared about me as much as his golfing appointment in an hour, I'd have it made.

"Are you sure?" Allison felt the feeling subside fully, and she nodded. "Have a seat. How are you feeling today?"

"Fine I guess."

"You wouldn't be here if you were fine."

"I've never been to a doctor alone before."

"Uneasy?"

"Yeah I guess."

"Well, we're going to take your pulse, and then we're going to perform a test or two." Allison nodded, and watched as he got out a stethoscope, and he frowned. "The nurse didn't tell you to change?"

"She seemed eager to leave."

"Eileen is like that." He said, putting down the chart board. Allison watched as he put the stethoscope down on her stomach, searching for a heart rate. Confusion flashed across his eyes, and Allison had the sudden urge to evilly laugh out loud, but held it down and settled for her second emotion, confusion. He moved the scope up a bit, and tried again. More confusion. "Well, lets try something else." He picked up Allison's wrist, and looked at his watch, which was not a watch but a five hundred dollar Rolex. He watched the second hand, and looked at her wrist again, changing his position on her wrist, then trying again. "Impossible. Lift your arm." Allison did as told, and he, almost harshly, grabbed her upper arm from underneath where the infant pulse is usually found. After a few seconds, he let go, and turned her neck slightly, going for her pulse on her neck. After a few seconds, he suddenly went numb, letting her go. "You've never been to a doctor alone?" His voice was shaky. Allison shook her head no, and he left the room quickly.

In a minute, he returned with another doctor, a woman, older and calmer. "Hello, Allison, how are you?" Allison nodded as if she didn't care. The woman started doing the same checkup as the man, but she did hers a bit more thoroughly, but came to the same confusion in the end. "Are you feeling well?"

"I'm wondering why this mook is in a panic. Other than that, I only feel depressed, which is why I supposedly came here in the first place."

"Dr. Reef is quite normal thank you very much, Miss Thatcher. What made him act out of character is that, why this may come as a shock to you but I assure you it is quite true, you don't have a pulse or a heart rate for that matter." She took out a mini flashlight, and opened Allison's eyes wide, flashing the light into them.

"AH!" Allison pulled back away from the doctor, who dropped the light. "What do you think you're doing, lady!"

"Checking your eyes for sensitivity, what else?" Allison shut her eyes because she began to see red again.

"They're sensitive okay! I could've told you that!" The doctor picked up the light again.

"Just let me check your eyes for infections." She grabbed Allison's arm, who yanked her arm back and stepped away from the two.

"No. Get away from me."

"It won't hurt, now stop acting like a baby." Allison looked up abruptly, and the doctor gasped violently. She was seeing red now, and her eyes were no longer hazel, but a deep blood red. The urge began to push her, and she could feel two of her teeth grow sharp. Her hand clamped over her mouth and she looked at the frightened doctors, feeling the urge pull at her even more. Without thinking, she ran over to the door and yanked the door open, running out into the waiting room and leaving the office. The sun hit her at full force, but it wasn't painful like the light directed at her eyes. She ran down a street, and ducked into a dark alley which would empty out on a local park that was hidden by trees. The urge got larger and larger until she could no longer take it. Looking over her shoulder, she saw two shadows behind her, and then she looked ahead of her, gasping as she rammed into a man not much taller than her. The good thing was that she wasn't seeing red anymore, but she could smell the malice on the man in front of her, and attempted to feel fear herself; she couldn't feel anything.

"Well, lookie here, fellas. Looks like we gots a little girl in our midst." The two shadows behind her were men who had foul smiles on their faces as they sauntered over to the two. Allison knew she had to get out of there before anything happened. "What should we do with her, guys? She looks quite delicious if I say so myself." Allison felt the man grab her upper arms, then throw her towards a wall. She felt herself react to the decision, and put her foot out, landing against the brick wall of the building and doing a back flip down as if the wall were the ground. The three looked amazed at her reaction and were furious as well. Allison was surprisingly calm, and she allowed an evil smirk to cross her face. They approached her and the urge suddenly came back; she was seeing red. She hungered for something they had. Standing calmly, she faced the three, letting the redness enter her eyes. She couldn't resist it for some reason. It was so strong, and she allowed the fangs to form at her teeth, and they stopped.

"You should've run." They were frozen, and Allison felt stimulated as their fear swarmed into her in the form of the urge. The one who caught her lunged at her, and she grabbed him by the neck, feeling strength beyond her imagining enter her. Lifting the man up into the air, she threw him against the opposite wall, and glared evilly at the fallen man. His friends were gone, she observed, and she sauntered over to him, her glare turning into a malicious smile. Kneeling down by him, she stared down at him, and felt his profane thoughts, but it was too late. He grabbed her wrist and arm, throwing her under him. He held her down with one arm across her neck as his other hand was busy trying to undo her button on her jeans. Her eyes were still red, her fangs bared as he tried not to look into them. "Look at me."

Her hand came up and, resting her fingers at his forehead, she moved them down lightly, getting his attention. Her eyes flashed gold, and he froze, making her smirk evilly. She ordered for him to let her go, and he did carefully, not losing eye contact with her. Grabbing a fistful of hair on his scalp, she gazed upon his neck, remembering what happened in the doctor's office with the poster. She pushed her fingers into his neck at the death point, and plunged her fangs into the man's neck, causing him to gasp and struggle as he came out of the reverie. She held him tightly, not letting him move.

The sensation of warmth over her lips made her roll her eyes in bliss as though she had been renewed, and she sucked the life from him with a newfound hunger. After he stopped struggling, she felt the last of his blood leave him, and she receded her fangs, licking her lips of the tasty treat. Letting his hair go, she threw his limp body against the brick wall behind her, and licked her lips again, a large, evil smile on her face. "Told you." The redness left her eyes and with it the evil. She suddenly felt quite normal, but very nauseous, and after the blood had already soaked into her skin, turning her a blush color, she saw the dead body at her feet.

A choice was presented to her. The nausea passed and she reveled in the sudden burst of energy. She just drank the blood of a human being and it felt good.

A smile crossed her face.