Warning: This story's part 2 contains a scene involving sex and violence (although not graphical). Other than that, there is nothing deserving the 'R' rating.


After Dark
Five Urban Fantasies


1.

The old gray cat that lived in the basement of St. Mary's Hospital awoke all of a sudden. He opened his big yellow eyes and stretched his back. Than he heard the sound of basement door being opened. Faster than you could say "speed" he rushed to the darkest corner of the room and disappeared in the shadows.
A minute after a young woman entered the room. She tried to turn on the lights but the switch was broken. "Damn," she said, and went out and soon the sound of her footsteps faded completely. The cat felt that she will not disturb the peacefulness of the basement for some time, so he returned to his favorite spot and lied there.

"The basement lights aren't working," Alice said. Steve listened to her complains with a gentle smirk, which was almost unnoticeable. "Could you please fix them?" she asked.
"Why, what'd I get for it?" he questioned, moving his eyebrows in a playful manner.
"That's your work, darling," Mia reacted, getting off his lap. "And stop flirting with Alice, or I'll make you regret." Then she laughed merrily, indicating that the 'regret' thing was a joke. Still somehow Alice doubted that. Her best friend could make one regret something, if she wanted. And yes, she wanted it quite frequently.
Alice liked the way Mia treated her dates, and wished she had some of Mia's character. Her own friend Jim could use some of the therapy Mia gave to Steve, but Alice dreaded trying it.
Steve collected his tools and went out to face the problem of the basement lights. Alice gave a deep sigh.

"You're so not like yourself today, you know?" Mia said. "What had happened?"
Alice just shook her head.
"Is that because of Jim again?"
Alice nodded, after some consideration. If there was someone who could help her with it, it was Mia. "Yes," she said, "it's him."
"So, and?"
Alice looked into her friend's wide gray eyes. "He wanted to have sex last night," she said.
"Alice, Alice!" Mia giggled. "You're still into your old beliefs. You really want to remain virgin until marriage?"
"You know I do," Alice answered, becoming even more serious. "Don't try to change my mind."
"Well, ok. But why don't you tell him this?"
"I did!" Alice cried, almost hopeless. "He still doesn't understand."
Mia crossed her arms on her breast. "In that case," she said, "maybe you should dump him?"
Alice looked at her, frightened. "I don't know," she said. "It's not that easy."
"Well it is easy." Mia's proud look was the one Alice disliked most. "Look at me, for crying out loud! If I see that the man isn't worth it, I tell him goodbye."
"That's you, and I'm not you." Alice stated the obvious because she didn't know what else she could reply.
Mia smiled skeptically. "Surely it is your life, and you are to decide," she said. "But I won't advise you staying glued to the man that doesn't deserve you." She exited the room leaving Alice lost in her thoughts.


2.

Cathy opened her mouth slowly and took a bite of cream-covered biscuit. She made it in a charming foxy manner, keeping a curious eye on the man sitting by the opposite side of the table.
"What an extraordinary luck," Jim thought admiring the style in which the girl ate the rest of the cookie. "She's marvelous."
Cathy enveloped another biscuit with her generous lips. "Wanna some?" she asked, knowing the exact answer the guy was going to give.
"You bet, babe!" he said, trying to make his voice sound lower than it really was. Cathy liked the way young men behaved with her; she found it very amusing how they always tried to seem older and more experienced.
"Are you sure?" Cathy considered that torturing him a little more might be good. Jim was a tender prey, and she wanted to get every possible bead of satisfaction from her hunt.
Jim gulped, uncertain of how the situation will turn out, answer he no or yes. The girl seemed to be of the 'I-like-games' type, so the answer of no would be just fine. But Jim was already too hot to play around any longer. "Yeah," he said.
"Good," Cathy was preparing for the final step. She licked her fingers removing any leftover cream. This made Jim gulp again. Cathy smiled and called the waiter. Jim paid. Cathy stood up and walked to the doors of the cafe, gesturing for Jim to follow her. Without waiting for him, she opened the doors and went out to smell the cool night air.
"Where are we going, sweetie?" asked Jim, catching up with her. "To the motel?"
"To my place." Cathy made a well-timed pause and continued: "There's a surprise waiting for you."
"Oh!" Jim didn't even try to imagine what kind of surprise he was going to get. The boy just loved surprises.

After some walking they came to a two-story house painted white. Cathy knocked on the door six or seven times, giving the loud echo. A minute later they heard someone stepping closer to the door.
"Here's the surprise, Sugarboy," Cathy said pushing Jim into the now-open door to meet another girl. Jim, being in some way cooled off after the walk, began to feel hot again. "It's my friend Sara," continued Cathy, closing and - click! - locking the door behind him.
"Hi," Sara said simply, her voice even more inviting than Cathy's.
"Hello," answered Jim. He still couldn't believe his luck.
"Do you like the surprise, Jim?" Cathy asked.
"I know hee doez," Sara declared and, in turn, inquired: "Would you like to play weez uz?"
"Uh... Certainly..." Jim was eager to do anything to get the one and only thing he desired at that moment.
"Great!" Sara spoke, grinning. "Such a lovely boy hee eez, Cathee!"
"I know. Take care of our guest while I go prepare everything."
"Right," Sara obeyed by showing him to the bedroom and taking Jim's jacket off. Then she proceeded to the lower part of his clothing.
"What are we going to play?" Jim's voice almost broke when Sara cuffed his hands to the shiny metal bedposts. She had already done undressing him, now starting to take her own clothes off.
"Vampire killers," Cathy said, walking into the room carrying a wooden stake and a heavy-looking hammer.
"Wah, that's even more kinky than I have thought!" Jim laughed. He was quite anxious to try something he had never done before.
"Right, keenky," Sara smiled again, positioning herself on top of him and starting to move in a weird rhythm. Jim closed his eyes in growing pleasure.
"But it's good," said Cathy as she crawled nearer and kissed him, simultaneously pressing the sharp stake into man's chest sensitive skin.
"Wee like eet zees way," mumbled Sara, continuing her seductive motion.

Jim also liked it that way until Cathy raised her hammer and then forced it down, hitting the stake. It crushed unlucky man's ribs, releasing a cry of almost unequaled pain from his throat. He managed to cry two more times before his lungs refused to work any more.
"Yes, we like it this way," murmured Cathy. "We most definitely do."


3.

Sara looked back. She saw a policeman speaking with some man near his car. The man looked pitiful, and the cop spoke loudly to him. Sara could not tell what the man's crime was, but this did not really interest her, either. She took her suitcase into another hand and walked off, just a little bit faster.

She reached St. James's Street at 22:20. "Okay," she thought, "everything goes as planned." Sara went up the street and turned left on the third corner. The alley before her was empty and dark: some kids broke the street lamps. Something wet touched her leg, and Sara was greatly displeased as she realized that the thick liquid was dripping from her suitcase.
She stopped, searching for a suitable bench. Sara spotted one near the far end of the street and quickly went there, making sure not to let the dark fluid fall on her clothes.
Sara sat down, put her heavy load onto the bench, briefly looked around and opened it. She didn't like the look inside - the cellophane somehow broke and the contents of the case painted its insides with dark red. She rearranged the cellophane so it would let no more liquid out and closed her case. Then Sara too a handkerchief out of her skirt pocket and carefully wiped the blood from her leg and suitcase's lower parts. She checked everything again but found no more disorder, so she stood up, threw the formerly white hankie into the nearby trash can and proceeded to her destination, an unremarkable cellar door in one of the brick houses.

Sara unlocked it with her key, entered and finally let herself smoke. After finishing her cigarette she went up an old wooden ladder and rang the bell. The door in front of her opened and Mrs. Cernie let her inside.
"You are late, darling," she said in her squeaky voice that would sound funny if Sara did not know the old woman so well.
"I' sorree, Mrs. Cernee," Sara said. "Zere were unpredictable events."
"There are no unpredictable events, my darling girl," Mrs. Cernie smiled. "It is too predictable for the cellophane to break if one is not careful when preparing the stuff." Sara was not surprised, it seemed that the old witch knew everything. But she paid cash, so Sara politely repeated her "I am sorry" line.
"It's okay, for now," the woman replied. "Just prepare better next time."
Sara received her earned money and stacked the notes into her leather wallet, as Mrs. Cernie dragged the suitcase into another room.
"Until ze next Thurzday," Sara said on her way to the exit, not wanting to hear the sounds that followed.

It is not safe for a young woman to walk the streets alone at night, so Sara boarded a subway train on the nearest available station.
Sara looked around. There was only one another passenger, some man wearing gray trench coat and a hat. She inspected his face and found it attractive, Sara always had a thing for green-eyed blonde men. Yet she didn't like his tired expression.
"Sometheeng eez eeteeng heem," she thought. "Hee ees eell, or ees een trouble, or both." The man changed his position to face the window, and Sara could no longer see his eyes.


4.

John looked at his watch. 23:40. Well, he still wasn't late. It's not like that Rick would stop waiting, but John enjoyed arriving in time. The girl who had been staring at him for the past thirty minutes went out on the last station, so now he was completely alone in this part of dimly lit train.
He left the subway on the next station, doing his best to keep his mind occupied by some things unimportant. A new story was being born, and every time it happened he was close to a nervous breakdown, so letting his mind wander around something insignificant was a wise thing to do. So John started watching the night.

He liked the way town looked at night; it seemed romantic to him. Sometimes he thought it was incorrect to admire the beauty of a nearly ruined house, because while he felt some pleasant melancholy looking at it, its inhabitants felt cold creeping through the cracks in the walls, but he couldn't help himself.
John walked all the rest of the way to his house. The street was nearly empty; half of the street lamps were broken and produced no light. Soon he was standing next to the door decorated with fake wood, rapping on it.
Rick let him in, smiling cheerfully.

Being home was good. They sat down on the floor, face to face.
"I have a new story idea," John said, still trying to get rid of the sad thoughts flooding his mind.
"I'm listening," Richard looked at John, showing he is ready for the tale.
"I thought of a girl," John said, concentrating on his plotline. "Of two girls, actually. They are very good friends, perhaps even more than friends. One of them is French."
"And she even speaks with accent, right? Zees eez zee way, monsieur?" Rick laughed.
"Yeah, probably," John's eyes were getting wet. He blinked. "And they feel they want some new experience. Maybe these aren't the correct words, but you'll get the idea. They think they need danger, some more adrenaline, and more excitement. Once the younger one invites a stranger to their home." John stopped and sniffed several times.
"It's getting interesting," Rick encouraged, aware of the fact that John was getting upset again.
"But this is the point when I don't know which way the plot will go. I thought the man could turn out to be a serial killer and mutilate poor gals. But somehow I don't know if this is right."
"Why not?"
"I don't know. I'm never sure what should I do." John sobbed.
"Oh, please don't!" Richard saw that John was ready to cry.
"Never. I even don't know if the story's good. Perhaps I should not write anymore." John closed his eyes and stopped sobbing. Instead he began to shake silently.
Rich moved closer and put his arm around John and hugged him as he did thousand times. "Come on, don't! The story will be great. And the one who must write it is you and no one else." His voice sounded friendly and caring, for he knew it had to.
John accepted the hug, his shudder slowly wearing off. Rick smiled. The act of creation was always painful for John. He could never face it alone, yet he would never ask for help. Someone had to be near, someone warm and understanding.
It had been a long time since Rick became that someone.


5.

"One hundred and sixty-eighth sheep, one hundred and sixty-ninth sheep... This is getting me nowhere!" Lillian jumped from her bed. She was hopelessly tying to fall asleep for the last two hours, but nothing helped.
"That's perfectly idiotic," she said, starting to walk around her room in random directions. "I must sleep. I must sleep." Walking didn't help either.
Lil turned on her computer, accessed the Internet and surfed it pointlessly. That was a way to spend some time, but not to make her sleepy, so she turned it off again.
"I wonder if uncle is asleep now," she thought. "I remember the time he had insomnia." Lillian found her phone book, flipped through it and dialed the correct number.

Rick lied on his bed, listening to the faint sound of keyboard clicks coming from the other room. At last, John felt ready for writing. Rick smiled.
The phone, wisely set to the 'half-loud' mode, rang. Rick quickly picked it up.
"Uncle Rich, is that you?" His 16-year-old niece was the only one to call him that.
"Yes, Lil, that's right me. What's up?" he asked.
"Um, I'm sorry I called you so late, but I just couldn't sleep," Lillian said, suddenly understanding that pulling someone from his bed in the middle of the night was not a great idea. "I recalled you had had insomnia for some time and I thought you knew some cure for it," she continued rather shyly.
"The best way to find rest is to wake someone up at 2 AM, that's for sure. But that rest could be eternal," Rick laughed. "But since I wasn't sleeping, I think it's alright. It's a pity I don't know a cure, though."
"Oh," Lillian's voice sounded totally desperate.
"But," Rick said, "I believe there must be something to help you. Tell me, for example, what helped you falling asleep when you were a child?"
"I think it was Daddy telling me some bedtime stories," Lil said after some consideration. "But I'm adult now. Besides, who'd tell me a story? Mom's out with that good-for-nothing Kevin man."
"I don't think you should treat Mr. Williams that way," Rick said. "He is a good man and he loves your mother."
"But I miss daddy so much. He will never replace him!"
"I know," Rick answered simply. "I miss my brother too. And as to bedtime stories, I could tell you one if you wanted."
Since she was 14, Lillian had thought she became too old for children's stuff but this temptation was too strong. "Oh, that would be so nice!" she said trying not to sound too excited.
"All right then," Rick collected his thoughts and started:
"Once, in one of the basements, there lived a gray cat. He had beautiful yellow eyes. He was old, but his fur was still fluffy..."


The End


P. S.
Wow! If you are reading these lines, you probably have read the whole story! Thank you!
Did you like it :-) or not :-( ? Why? Please tell me in a review!
BTW, if you found some things confusing, or wanted to ask me something, feel free to e-mail me to . I'll be glad to answer your questions and give my comments.