Prologue: Executions

"Get going," barked a tall muscular Caucasian man in a long black trench coat as he kicked another man, who was curled up on the ground in the fetal position, in the ribs. "This is your last chance." The man on the ground coughed and gasped as he clawed his way to a standing position. Once he had, he turned to look his attacker in the face. The tall man that had spoken just looked back at him from behind mirrored sunglasses.

"Fuck you!" spat the man that had been kicked in the ribs. "Fuck all of you! Especially you, Santana!"

Santana said nothing. Instead, he just studied the man for a few seconds. Then, without any warning, he used the butt of the rifle he was holding to smash the man on the side of his face. The man spun around like a top and was back on the ground lying face down in the dirt.

"Fuck me?" sneered Santana. "No. Fuck you. I'm trying to be nice here and you just insult me. What kind of way is that to be? Now, get the fuck going or I'll just have to shoot you right here. And if you force me to get blood on my truck, I'll do a lot more than just shoot you." With that he yanked the man back up to a standing position and shoved him off to run for his life.

Once the man had gotten about a hundred yards, Santana examined his rifle carefully. Satisfied that all was in order, he looked through the scope of his rifle and took aim at the man as he ran off through the woods. Almost bored, he slowly squeezed off one shot. All at once there was a dull thud as the bullet hit the man in the back and exploded out through his chest. Even without looking through the scope, he could see the man fall to the ground. Slinging his rifle over his shoulder, Santana walked to the back of the Bronco. After fumbling for a few seconds in his pocket for his keys, he picked them out and searched for the key that would open the rear door. Upon finding the right key, he unlocked the door and opened it. Inside the back of the Bronco were various instruments used for painfully extracting information out of people. He just reached across them and pulled out two gas cans. Then, whistling, he set off to where the man had fallen.

As Santana approached he could see that the man was lying twitching on the ground clutching at his chest to try and stop the blood from flowing out of its wound. Santana just stood over the helpless individual and set down the two canisters. "Oh," he began with a smile at the man's plight. "Just stop. You look pathetic. Where's your spine? Oh, there it is right there. And there too." He laughed at his own joke, pulled out a pistol, and pointed it at the man's head. Sensing his own end, the man looked up at Santana with fear and pleading in his eyes. Their eyes met for just an instant and Santana lowered his gun. For a brief instant, it looked as though Santana was going to somehow spare the man. That hope was dashed when he picked up one of the gas canisters and used it to deliver a tremendous blow across the man's skull. Then he opened the canister up and poured the gasoline all over the man, even making sure that the gasoline got into the man's wound as well.

"Does it hurt?" Santana asked in a mocking tone as he continued pouring the gasoline. "Does it hurt?"

When both of the gas canisters were empty, Santana pulled out a cigar and a pack of matches. After lighting the entire pack of matches, he just casually dropped them on the man's chest. The man let out a piercing death cry as he was instantly completely engulfed in flames. Santana took a few steps back and looked on with an amused smirk as the man burned to a crisp. Once he was satisfied that the man was truly dead, Santana turned to walk away but, having realized that he had completely forgotten to light his cigar, turned back around. Calmly he knelt down next to the still burning form of the man, leaned forward, lit the cigar, and stood up again puffing on it. "Why waste good fire?" he said as he picked up the now empty gas canisters and walked back towards the Bronco.

As he walked something in the grass glinted and caught his eye. Santana stopped and looked down to see what is was. It was a gold crucifix and chain. Looking back at the small bonfire, he picked up the fallen item and put it in his coat pocket. "How ironic," he said. "A religious vampire." He then casually walked back to the Bronco, puffing his cigar some more and quite content in the knowledge that this was a job well-done. After stowing the gas canisters and his rifle, he got into the Bronco and drove off towards a rendezvous point with his friends back in the city.

Elsewhere, a single shot rang out followed soon after by a blood-curdling scream. A Native American man lying on the hood of another Bronco looked up from his magazine at hearing the sounds and smiled. After noting the page he was reading, he set his magazine down and turned his head to look at his two companions. The first was an athletically built Caucasian blonde woman wearing dark glasses sitting under a tree playing solitaire. The second was a small African-American girl sitting in the passenger seat of the Bronco listening to her Walkman and trying to speak German. Slowly the man got off the hood and shook off the hours of not moving. He was a big man who looked like he could be a linebacker for a pro football team. Without a word he went over to the African-American girl and gently tapped her on the shoulder through the open window of the door. "Onyx," he said. "It's time."

Without even stopping in her attempts at her poor German, Onyx just pulled a set of keys out of her coat pocket and handed them to the man. He took them from her without a word, but then leaned through the window and kissed her on the cheek just long enough to distract her from her German.

"Now isn't the time for that," commented the blonde playing solitaire.

Onyx just stuck out her tongue and stopped her Walkman. "You're such a killjoy, Aurora" she said as the man moved back from the door. "Always being the mother hen…"

"I have an idea for you, Onyx," interrupted a man who was standing in a clearing a few yards away. "Why don't you get off your lazy fucking ass and help Richard get her out of the Bronco before it gets any lighter? Besides, it's bad enough that we missed the third one back in the city."

"I don't think so," stated Onyx plainly as she opened the door and got out. "She smells like Death's moldy ass. Besides, Richard is perfectly capable of handling her by himself." With that, she pressed the play button on her Walkman, turned up the volume, hopped up on the hood of the Bronco, and laid back against the windshield.

Richard, meanwhile, pulled a black body bag out of the back of the Bronco. It was obvious to anyone looking that there was someone inside. After hefting the body bag over his shoulder as if it were just a sack of potatoes, he walked over to where the other man was waiting and dropped it to the ground at the man's feet without giving any thought about how the person inside would feel about him doing so. "She's all yours, Drake," Richard said to the man before walking away. He didn't want to be a part of what was going to happen next. He already felt dirty from what he helped Santana do to her back in the city, and that was more than enough for him as far as he was concerned. "Please, hurry up. The sun is rising and we should just get this over and done with." Drake just turned an ill-tempered glare in Richard's direction and knelt down to open the bag.

Upon opening the bag, the smell of something dead or dying wafted through the air. Onyx, even from where she was, covered her nose, while Richard coughed a few times to keep from retching. Aurora just crinkled her nose and continued with her game of solitaire. Drake, somehow, seemed to take no notice. Slowly and deliberately he reached into the bag and yanked the occupant inside out by the hair. It was a girl about nineteen years of age. She was dirty and disheveled and her clothes looked as if they had been torn off her at some point. Drake pulled her up onto her knees and stood up straight in front of her. Almost instantly, she fell forward and clawed at his ankles, crying. "P-p-please," she stuttered. "I don't know anything more than what I already told you. I don't want to die…"

Her plea for mercy was suddenly silenced when a lone ray of sunlight found its way through the leaves of the trees and struck her arm. She screamed as if touched by a hot iron. Drake smiled as she cradled her arm, weeping. With a firm slap he silenced her crying and drew out a large knife. He then slowly danced the blade back and forth through the ray of sunlight. The girl looked on briefly before starting to cry again.

"Do you know what would happen if I used this on you?" he asked her as he grabbed her by the back of the head and forced her to look him in the face. Her fear of him made her voice inaudible. "Answer me when I ask you a question!" The tone of his voice scared her to her senses. She knew it would be less painful for her if she answered him.

"N-no," she stammered. "I don't know. What would happen?"

Without giving her an answer, Drake pressed the flat of the blade against her cheek. She screamed even louder than she had before. The blade had felt like it had just come from a fire. "It hurts doesn't it?" he asked cruelly as he walked around behind her while still holding onto the back of her head. "A normal weapon, when freshly bathed in the rays of the sun, not only acts like a hot iron when it touches a vampire, but will also affect a vampire as if they were a mortal." The girl tried to turn her head to look at him, but he touched her cheek with the flat of the blade again to prevent her from doing so. She screamed again and Drake gave her a forceful shove forward so that she'd fall facedown on the ground. Her crying and begging resumed while Drake just looked at the others. Aurora was calmly ignoring the whole situation while Richard and Onyx desperately tried to keep their minds on other things.

Once Drake had felt she had had a good enough cry, he grabbed her by the hair and yanked her back into an upright position on her knees. As he loomed over her from behind, he put his hand on her chin and tilted her head upwards until her eyes met his. He saw nothing but fear in her eyes and she saw nothing but cold hatred in his. Without ever breaking eye contact with her, he silently slit her throat from ear to ear and held her in place while she struggled in vain not to die. The hate in his eyes remained constant the entire time.

When at last her eyes glazed over and it was evident that she was dead, Drake shoved her forward again and whistled over to Richard and Onyx. Onyx set her Walkman down and got off the hood while Richard retrieved two gas canisters from the back of the Bronco. The both of them then went over to where Drake was standing. Without a word, Drake left them alone to dispose of the girl's body while he began cleaning up the traces of their being there. As he did, he cleared his throat noticeably. Aurora instantly stopped her game of solitaire, packed up her cards, stood up, and dusted herself off. She then unfolded a white cane and made her way over to the Bronco. When she found it, she got into the front passenger seat, closed the door, and waited for the others to finish up.

Drake, Richard, and Onyx finished their assigned tasks as quickly as possible. After packing away their stuff, they joined Aurora in the Bronco and set off to meet up with Santana for breakfast at their usual hangout, Jezael's. While they were still on the dirt road that led to where they had just disposed of the vampire, they were all noticeable tense. However, they soon reached paved road, and a calm washed over them. They all let the fact sink in that in a few hours they'd be back to their real lives and this entire event would disappear into memory. Onyx leaned against Richard, kneaded his bicep as if it were a pillow, and fell asleep to a kiss from him placed on the top of her head. Richard then put his head against hers and just stared out into the morning sky. In the front seat, Aurora silently searched for Drake's hand. When she found it, she gripped it tightly, as if needing some kind of security. He returned her grip equally. After a few tender seconds, he brought her hand to his lips and gave it a quick and gentle kiss. "It's over now," he whispered to her. "We're all safe."

To be continued…