Darkborne: A Modern Gothic Story


Timothy Burr

Chapter 1

Alex walked out of the hospital, having gotten what he needed. He checked his watch, seeing that it said '5:24'. It would be night in a couple hours, and he would need his partner to be in top form during the hunt. It is October, giving the air a cool breeze that caused Alex to shiver. For as long as he could remember, he never liked the cold. He walked down the streets towards the apartment complex that his partner resided in. It was an old and shoddy place, that looked liked it hadn't been properly taken care of in years. The shutters were falling off and the paint was chipped. It was a pretty shitty complex to say the least, but his partner wasn't someone who cared what state his abode was in, so long as it had all the basic necessities.

Alex walked up the stairs to the fourth floor of the complex and found his way to his partner's room. He knocked on the door and a few seconds later, heard a gravely voice replied. "It's open." Alex opened the door and walked in, and was immediately caught off guard by how dark it was inside. Not wanting to trip over any object that may be on the floor (unless it came to hunting, his partner couldn't be bothered to do much, especially cleaning his goddamn room), he padded his hand on the wall in search of a light switch. Finding it, he flipped it, illuminating the dark room. The first thing thing he noticed was that he was right in his fear of tripping over something, as the room was cluttered with beer bottles and piles of clothing. The second thing he noticed was his partner laying on his couch, a man who appeared to be in his early twenties, with dark messy hair, mild stubble adorning his face, icy blue eyes, and dressed in nothing more than a gray t-shirt, and black pants.

The man grunted in discomfort at the assault on his senses, and sat up rubbing his eyes. Despite it not being necessary for him like with his kin, he still preferred a nocturnal lifestyle. "Really?" he asked. "Couldn't be bothered to at least warn me before you try to blind me?" Alex scowled in response. "Well maybe if you clean your room every once in a while, it wouldn't have to come to that Bryan." The now named Bryan smiled in amusement and chuckled. "What's so funny?" Alex questioned. "Oh nothing," Bryan responded casually. "It's just that I'm older than you, and here you are parenting me."

Alex rolled his eyes and scoffed in response. "Well someone ought to. I'll tell you one thing, my mother would beat my ass if she saw me living how you do". Bryan's amused smile then dropped, replaced by a serious, no-nonsense expression. "Did you at least get it?" he asked stoically. Alex then showed him a paper bag and dug his hand into it, fishing for something. He then pulled out a jar, filled with a dark red liquid. "You bet I did" Alex affirmed. "I had to pay a lot of money for it too. This stuff isn't exactly cheap you know" he said as he handed the jar over to Bryan. "Certainly beats the alternative," the dark haired man replied.

Bryan accepted the jar, and unscrewed the lid, peering inside. It's been a while since he indulged his other side, and truth be told, he hated drinking the stuff. But, it was necessary as without it, he would be as weak and vulnerable as the average person. He brought the jar to his lips and threw his head back, allowing the red liquid to pour down his throat. After feeling he had consumed an adequate amount, he brought the jar away from his mouth and screwed the lid back on. Placing the jar on a table in front of his couch, Bryan sat up and stretched out his limbs. Not long after, he felt the blood start to take effect, stimulating all of his physical and mental capabilities, amplifying them to the peak of human potential.

He was now ready for the hunt.

"So.." he started. "Do you have intel on our target?" Alex nodded, pulling out a file. "That we do. His name is Jacob Smith. Male. Age twenty-one, at least that's how old he appears to be. A recent student of University of Maine, and a body count consisting of up to twelve girls ages sixteen to twenty-four."

Bryan scowled in disgust. He didn't know if Jacob was born or turned, but if it was the latter, he'd wager that he would have been a serial killer regardless if he was bitten or not. Honestly, the only difference between humans and the so-called monsters he hunted was that monsters had more opportunities, and were more likely to get away unnoticed when indulging in depravity.

"And one more thing," Alex added. "He's going on a date tonight."

Bryan looked at Alex for a moment as he understood what this implied.

"Ah shit"

This hunt was going to be difficult.

Meanwhile, at Chi Omega sorority, University of Maine

Kate was excited.

She was currently in her dorm, getting ready for a night out. She was applying the finishing touches of makeup. She was unsure if she was at her best, so she turned to her dormmate to ask for her opinion. "So, what do you think?"

Her dormmate, Kenzie, gave her a reassuring smile. "You look good. I'm sure Jacob will be stunned."

"You really think so?" she asked. Kenzie nodded in response and placed a hand on her shoulder. "Look," she began. "You don't have to be nervous. You're a very nice and beautiful person Kate, and from what I know of Jacob, he seems to be nice as well. I think he'll be happy no matter how you look." Kate smiled and hugged her friend. "Thank you." Their moment was interrupted by a notification sound from Kate's phone. Checking it, she sees that it is a text message from Jacob, telling her that he was in front of the sorority to pick her up. "He's here," Kate told her friend. They shared one last hug with each-other. "Have fun," Kenzie wished her friend a good night.

Kate left the sorority building and found that Jacob drove in a black 1972 Dodge Charger. 'Nice car' Kate thought to herself.

Jacob, a tall boy with tanned skin, dark brown hair parted to the right, brown eyes, and clad in a leather jacket stepped out of the Dodge Charger to greet her. "Hey." He hugged her, and Kate felt herself become overwhelmed with jitters. This would be her first date in years. "You look beautiful" he complimented her, causing Kate to blush. Jacob, acting as the gentlemen, then opened the passenger door to let Kate in. As Kate made herself comfortable, she felt a feeling that something was wrong, though she couldn't quite specify what it was. Was she forgetting something? Was it just a feeling of nervousness? 'No,' she said to herself. 'You worry too much. Just like Kenzie said, just enjoy the night. What's the worst that could happen?' Jacob got back into the driver's car and started the engine. "You ready?" he asked with a pleasant smile on his face. Kate smiled back and nodded. "Sure am." Jacob then drove the two of them off of campus.

If only Kate had taken that feeling seriously, for this would be the night that her life would change forever.