Incandesca entered her shoe room and turned on the chandelier.
Sneezer and Body Slammer fidgeted outside the doorway.
“Quit standing there like seasick sailors. Get in here. Now.”
They reluctantly obeyed.
She strolled along the lacquered black metal displays. “Just look at it. Look at all of it.”
The two men half-heartedly obeyed.
“Glorious, aren’t they?”
Body Slammer shrugged.
Sneezer sneezed five times in a row.
“So many shoes. So many styles. But only two feet.” She stopped. “It isn’t fair.” Her fingers traced the pattern on a pair of boots made entirely out of lace doilies. “It just isn’t fair. If only there were a way I could wear four at a time or six or ten. That would be magnificent.”
Body Slammer swallowed nervously.
This train of thought is dangerous. She’s either gonna make us wear her shoes or she’s gonna chop off our legs and attach them to her body. Either way reeks for us.
“So, the question is what should I do? She rejected me. The brazen hussy. She rejected ME! And, if that weren’t insult enough, she and her love bird annihilated my whole crew.” She grabbed the boots and flung them at the two men.
“That is unforgivable! You hear me? Unforgivable! How am I supposed to rule this town without minions?”
Sneezer combed his fingers through his white-blonde hair. “I don’t see what the problem is. We’re vampires. All we have to do is change every person we bite. Boom! New crew.”
“You don’t understand. Neither of you mooks understand. This disaster makes me look weak. I am Incandesca. I am not weak.”
Neither man chose to say what they thought about that statement.
“I’ve never been so humiliated. Outside of what Mark did to me.” She resumed her stroll about. Her fingers trailed over laces and leather, buckles and canvas, heels and flats. “Mark.” She stopped and stroked a pair of black patent leather clogs. “Dear Mark. Lovely Mark. Gorgeous Mark who deserves twelve million deaths each one worse than the one before it. Sweet Mark who needs to DIE!”
Sneezer elbowed Body Slammer and mouthed the words “Make her stop”.
Body Slammer totally understood. He knew from personal experience how long her Mark Caten rants could run and how violent they could become. And they were in a room with so many potential flying projectiles. He cleared his throat. “So, are you going to take the Marauder’s suggestion?”
She seethed a glare at him. The falcon mask still covered her face, but Body Slammer could feel the glare.
“About that Ambrose Smith. Killing Mark Caten. For you. Just for you.”
She smirked. “Of course, I’ve thought about it. My instinct tells me not to trust her. She is Elsie the Marauder, no matter what she may say. There’s a reason why she suggested him. Maybe he isn’t even real.”
Sneezer rubbed his nose. “So, no?”
Her attention returned to the clogs. “I haven’t seen my daughter in so long. How long has it been? More than days. So many days and so many nights. Olessa. My little Olessa. But it has been too many days and nights repeated over and over begun and ended. I don’t think she’s little anymore.”
Sneezer cleared his throat. “So? No?”
“She loved Mark more than she loved me. I can see her. My Olessa. My little girl running to Mark. Hugging Mark. Always Mark before me. I hated that. I hate that! When I see…But. I can’t see her again. I can never go near her again. Because of Mark.”
Body Slammer sighed. Why can’t she just get a therapist so she can download all of this past junk on him? “Master. What do you want to do?”
“Kill Mark Caten, of course.”
“But you can’t.”
The clogs smacked him in the face. “Yes. Yes! Just rub it in! Make me feel even worse.”
“Master, please. I wasn’t trying to insult you. I was stating facts. Someone has to do it for you.”
“And she recommended Ambrose Smith.” She touched a pair of gladiator sandals. “I wonder why. Who is this Ambrose Smith?” She snapped her fingers.
The two men straightened up.
“Go. Find out about this Ambrose Smith. Who is he? Is he real? Where is he? How is he connected to the Marauder. I don’t care how you find this all out. Just get it done.”
Sneezer and Body Slammer bowed. “Yes, Master.”
They left the room.
She smiled at the sandals. “If he is real, Mark will die. Die! DIE!” She threw her head back and laughed. “Mark Caten will die!”