The Vampire's Kiss

In the dead of the night: the vampire and his mortal love on a bed of earth, a grave of death.

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Captivated.

- The earth beneath his fingers began to curl, crumbling into masses of rich, heady soil, emanating wetness through his heightened veins; pulsing, lulling, through quivering lungs, wrenching their hold on every tint and odour that seeped through his transient eyes. He took a breath. The pungent lips, the white body, lolled beneath his thirsty tongue.

Captivated.

He threaded her golden hair through his fingers, through the wet and peeling grass, down to its last and tiniest tresses.

Grass.

Earth.

Her voice barely audible above him: "Kiss me."

(White cotton, rippling, in black grassland. Flowing over trees, shrubs, silver moonlight. Laughing, a smudge of light against darkness, as she would always be; even as she threw herself back, limbs tossed aside in some careless crucifix, as grass poked up and down the folds of her cotton dress and along her marbled temples. She his white virgin, his perfect dove.

He lowered himself further; soil, pungent, snaking between his fingers.

"Yes, darling."

A curving whisper.

She buried herself into the night.

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Or rather, in the dappled moonlit washed by willow trees, she heaved. She touched the same marshy soil, the same dark dirt staining the back of her thin white dress. Her fingers that then locked into his icy ones.

He caught the limp moisture of her mouth; the luscious red ribbon.

"I wish I could understand," she murmured. "How it's possible for you, you, to love a mortal-"

Perhaps he sighed. She tightened her hold on those fingers, crushing its jewelled rings in her sweat, her ecstasy.

"Because you are so fragile."

"Am I-?"

"So sweet."

She had never questioned the identity of this dark-eyed stranger, with his pale, drawn cheeks and scintillating hair. Or the magnetic force that had her spellbound, captivated, to drink each and every word from his pallid lips. She had waited too long for this night. She could only close her eyes and inhale the spicy leaves as they hovered about her, a halo, and the faintest champagne of his scent.

"I do not understand."

She raised her sapid eyes to his brilliant diamond ones. Challenging.

"Then try... catching a shadow."

Shadows... what did she know of them? A fleeting metaphor, a wisp of the intangible. Shadows of the silent tombs and clinging ivy she frequented so fervently; shadows of the fear, the desire, of waiting for him every night. Shadows.

She now held him to her as greedily an ravenously as one raking the wet, as she sucked at those lips, tentatively, violently, knowing that shadows tasted most delicious in their unknown form: as illusions, not reality.

"I cannot catch shadows."

He allowed his fingers to release hers and wander through her hair instead.

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Nothing like euphoria.

Row after row of stone angels and worn gravestones. Moonlight piercing through the sheaves of weeping willow, casting the world in shy, mottled silver. Leaves trembled.

"You don't understand," he tightened. "Oh, these nights. The feeling deep inside." Lust like a thousand writhing worms, shining as her skin, ripe as her full, quenching lips. They could devour him while he kept scouring the earth (beneath her), the roots strapping him in that wretched purgatory between ecstasy and languid horror. He slid his fingers over her neck, her milky shoulders.

Was it possible to die from elation? From being violently happy?

"You don't understand what it's like to wait. Among the shadows, every night... my love, my love."

"Then why... did you?"

He traced the quivering outline around her delicate white arms.

"Because."

She was like one of those porcelain dolls he beheld on city streets; painted, poignant, little rosebud lips half-opened. She was not very real, in the sun; but in the moon she was something else, primal, and luminous. An enormous lily. The first time he saw her, it was day; the sun arrowed off her warm spring flesh. Had he fear of such sun?)

"I, too, am fragile," he whispered. "And that is why."

"You are immortal."

"Not quite."

He bent above her, a bone-white shadow, long and carved like a sword. His hair swept over her. And his fingers rained deeper into the folds of her moist gown, her flesh.

"Did you know that you could kill me?..."

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Night bended: a curtain of black ringed in shards of envy. The kiss soaked straight to her throat. She stilled in acquiescence, at the guilty pleasure, entwined in him, rocking, believing.

His breath mingled on her eyelids, sweet as opium. Fingers at her temples.

"If you should die," she refused to leave him, his wine soaked lips, "Or leave me-"

"You could kill me," he whispered. "Tear me limb from limb..."

She shuddered. Lashed. He caught her flailing hands and locked eyes on her again; a puzzling or pleading smile creasing his curved lips.

"Scatter those pieces into fire."

"-Please."

"You could stab me,"

(You?)

"Drive a crucifix through my heart..."

"If you should die-"

"Then you would impale me. You would grow yourself into the very heart of me."

The fingers slid.

Willows cupped skin shone porcelain waved against purple graves icy as lips locked lips with rolling earth in between (once more). This time the paroxysm shook her like Earth shaking its stars. She clutched at the wet earth beneath her, not to keep herself awake in reality (as they always had done), but rather, because it seemed it could collapse any moment now, as the throbbing pressure bloomed in her heaving chest. Wetness wrenched from deep within.

She moaned. Her lips smacked against his with the desperation of a drowning swimmer, as the red currents flooded over her golden hair.

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A thousand worms screamed through her veins.

Black. Red. Grey. Fat and succulent, laughing, wet like the earth and to the earth they would return.

He could not stop. Tracing their names on her scintillating, rainbow skin:

Theodora.

Francisca.

Evangeline.

(Pretty graves all in a row.)

Girls that once lived, were virgins, now dead; girls that shuddered and screamed in the vampire's kiss.

"Please," she moaned. "Please..."

But at the same time he filled her. That much.

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And now, she twisted and writhed in the mahogany mud, greyness stealing the moon. The blood dripped from her shoulders, her tongue, macerating the green earth in cakes of acid effluvia, whipping its spidery veins over the ancient soil, (bloomed between her legs).

A smacking silence, hollow as a stone angel.

"Hush."

Tears beaded down her cheeks, her hollow eyes.

"..Why?"

Tentatively. So angelically.

"Because, my darling. Because,"

"-I love you so much-"

"Then you did what you could."

"I climbed - mountains - oceans-"

He kissed the blood from her shoulders as she slowly became a crucifix, limbs tossed aside, stilled and silent, while night closed on itself, folding its wings.

He got up, wiping the blood off his shiny lips, leaving only the tiniest smudge on his silk cravat (he would keep it, cherish it, the blood of one fair angel.)

He looked at the moon.

(Somewhere, the stars swam too, like blood, slow, drunken currents.)

He sighed. He pushed the lithe, twisted body into an empty grave. Just a smudge of white, red, against black.