“This is ludicrous.” Ambrose tugged hard on his chains. They refused to give. “I don’t know what’s worse: the fact that she caught me so easily or the fact that I’m chained up in my own dungeon.” He clenched his teeth and tried again.
She walked up to him – a vision with long black hair, a red leather jacket, and black jeans. Her lily of the valley and musk scent overwhelmed his senses.
She pulled on her silver gauntlets.
“You’ve made a mistake. I haven’t done anything wrong.” He pulled on the chains with all of his unnatural strength, but they did not break. “No matter what Mark Caten may have told you.”
“You’re a vampire. That’s wrong enough.”
“And what are you? Are you just a mindless killing machine out to kill another killing machine? Elsie, is that all that we are?”
She looked at him, calm and steady. “We are nothing alike. You kill for sport—”
“And for food. Don’t forget: I can’t live without blood.”
“I kill because it is my job. And that is it.”
“Of course. Mark Caten tells you kill. So, you kill. And that makes you the hero, doesn’t it?”
“You’re talking too much. Silence would serve you better.”
“Why? You’re going to kill me whether I’m silent or not.”
She pulled a wooden stake out of her jacket. “I don’t like talkative prey.”
“You stole one of my best lines.”
“It’s better than what you steal.”
“Then, you have to ruin it with a weak line like that.” He tried to stand, but the chains binding his wrists to the wall were too short. He’d have to stand in a stooped position. Even though he hated the inequality of the situation, he sat down on the cold stone floor. “I’m sorely disappointed, Elsie. I thought a woman with your talents and reputation would have a better supply of quips.”
She stepped closer to him and pressed the stake against his throat. “Stop. Talking.”
He made eye contact with her. His black eyes looked into her gold-colored eyes. And, in that one perfect moment, neither he nor she needed to speak. Everything that could be said, everything that needed to be said, passed between them.
And they understood each other perfectly.
She touched his chest with the tip of her stake. “I’m sorry, Ambrose.”
“Elsie. Don’t. Please.”
She tapped the side of her stake and a thin needle penetrated his chest.
The heady pine scent of rosemary and witch hazel filled him with a senseless euphoria. He fell back against the wall, seeing nothing and everything and it all was wonderful.
Rose petals tumbled and floated out of her eyes. She spoke, but her words came out as ribbons of color and daisy chains of blood. It was all so very wonderful.
She unchained him and guided Ambrose’s hallucinating self up the stone staircase’s long curves.
As she rounded the final curve, she saw a trio of men in black suits and mirrored sunglasses waiting at the top for her. Or, to be more accurate, for him.
Ambrose looked over at her and smiled. It was a soft, kindly smile and it caught her off guard.
He whispered, “You’re wonderful.” before passing out.
The men came down and took him away, without so much as a “Hello” “Thank you” or “Good-bye.”
Elsie walked up to the top step alone and sat down, lost in her thoughts.