“All right!” Hildreth pulled out his Bossman 550. “Time for some good old fashioned vampire staking.”
“Oh, spare me.”
He laid his hand on the side of Hildreth’s head and smiled.
Hildreth flinched as he felt the vampire break into his mind. “no. don’t. Don’t!” He aimed his weapon at the vampire.
Everything went black.
There was screaming inside the darkness.
“Hildreth! Stop! STOP!”
He tried to open his eyes, but his eyes refused to open.
Her screams became wild with panic.
And he was alone in the dark.
Free falling and floating alone in the dark.
He tried again to open his eyes.
This time was a success.
He glanced around.
I’m home. In my own bed. Was that a dream? It felt real. It felt so real.
He sat up.
No dizziness. No pain.
Well. That’s good. Maybe it was a dream.
He picked up his cell phone and called Elsie’s number.
It went straight to voice mail.
He frowned. She has her phone off? Why?
Hildreth tensed up. What if she’s hurt? What if?
A wad of tension knotted up his stomach.
What if he’s come back?
What if he has her?
He jumped out of bed and raced to the door. He tried to turn the doorknob.
Hildreth unlocked it and tried again.
The door was wedged shut.
He staggered back.
He tried to call her again and again and again.
He called again and left a message.
“Elsie. Are you okay? Please be okay. Please. I…I don’t understand what’s happening. I’m locked up in my room. You’re not answering your phone. Please. If you’re okay. If you can hear me. If you get this message…Elsie. I don’t understand. Please don’t shut me out. Call me back. If you’re okay, please call me back. Let me hear your voice. Let me understand. Please. Don’t leave me like this. Elsie. I love you. I love you. Please talk to me. Please. I need you. I need to know that you’re okay. Oh, baby. Please. Call me back. Don’t leave me in the dark like this. Call me. Talk to me. Please. Please.”
Elsie sat in her room with the door locked. Her expression was hard and cold.
She refused to think.
She refused to move.
If she could have refused to breathe, she would have done so.
Her phone beeped a message alert.
She picked up her phone and listened to the message.
As Hildreth spoke in her ear, her hardness melted. She wanted to throw the phone down and run into his arms.
But I can’t go to him.
He tried to kill me.
She listened to the message again.
And she saw him point his Bossman 550 at her.
He pulled the trigger.
Hildreth sat on the edge of the bed with his head in between his hands.
I don’t understand.
He tried to visualize what had happened in that darkness.
I can’t just sit here.
If she’s hurt.
If that blasted vampire has her.
I need to get out of here.
I need to go to her.
I need to find her.
“I don’t even know where to start.”
But I need to try.
I have to try.
I can’t just sit in here and mope.
He returned to the door and tried to push it open. He threw his body at the door over and over. He glanced around the room for inspiration.
He saw his window.
Hildreth ran over to it.
What if it’s blocked up too? What if—-
He pulled the curtains aside. The window wasn’t blocked or jammed in any way.
“Good.” He pulled the window open.
It was a two story drop to the ground with no convenient trellises or ladders or eaves to help him down.
He shrugged. “It’s either jump or find a way to tear the door down.” He sighed. “Then, I’d have to go buy another door and wait for the guys to come and install it. Way too much trouble.”
Hildreth climbed on the window sill.
He took a deep breath.