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A Vampire’s Lullaby
Author's note: After reading Bram Stocker's Dracula, I came upon the thought of how a child would feel being a vampire and it soon developed into this story about a vampire family.
In the late hours of a warm, dry Italian night a young family is unloading their luggage from a hearse. The year is 1928, and the place is Camucia, Italy. The young family is made up of two young boys and their parents. The youngest boy is Allophones, eight years old; the oldest boy is Raphael; ten years old, and their parents Doctor Michael Moretti and Philomena Moretti. It was Micheal's first time returning to Camucia after living some time in England where he went to school to better educate himself in the sciences, particularly the anatomy of the human body. Micheal's profession was that of a mortician.
Micheal was unpacking the final loads of luggage into their new home while Philomena was making sure the children were playing fairly outside. The house was small and made of red brick. It had two bedrooms, a kitchen, and a living room. There was an outhouse in the back yard along with a carriage house where Michael would hold his business. After the luggage had all been brought in, they entered their new home as one, holding each others hands. Rapheal's eyes wandered curiously while Allophones kept his eyes at his feet. The home was warmly lit with the aide of the fireplace and a large white candle in the kitchen. The first room was the living room where there was an old well kept rug and two short rocking chairs made of wood. As they walk deeper into the house, young Allophones nervously grips his mother’s dress to hold onto something familiar. His brother on the other hand speeds up and looks around the dinning area. The family remains silent as they make their way through the house and into a small room with a single bed, the only light was a small white candle lit on the small night stand. “Is this where we sleep mother?” Allophones asked in a low voice with a young Italian accent.
“Yes Allophones, this is your room,” Philomena answered with a light Italian accent.
Michael stayed fixed in the door way, watching them silently, pulling out his gold pocket watch and checked the time casually.
Raphael slowly walked over to the bed and sat down at the side of it. Allophones was still gripping his mother's cloth dress.
“Go on, join your brother in bed, Allophones; there’s nothing to be scared of,” Philomena said kindly with her angelesque voice.
Allophones looked a bit discouraged, but let go of his mother and got into bed with his brother. As Philomena was about to leave the room, she said, “Goodnight my loves.”
Suddenly Allophones yelped “Wait!”
“What is it, love?” His mother asked.
“Can you tell us a bed time story?”
“Yes! Can you mother?” Raphael added.
“Alright then,” complied their mother, for she could never say no when faced by their adorable faces.
The two boys looked very similar, though they did not share any features of their parents. Their cheeks were full of youth. They looked innocent. They had outstanding brown eyes that seemed to gleam brightly in the light of the candle next to their bed. The skin was very pale, similar to the ill. Their canine teeth had a peculiar sharpness to them and were slightly elongated.
Their mother sat down next to them towards the end of the bed. She was the most beautiful of women. She seemed very young, possibly in her late teens, or early twenties, too young some may say to have two children of her own. Her hair was black in contrast to her skin which had a sensational paleness to it. Her eyes were the color of a gorgeous golden green that seemed to glow in the candlelight. Her lips full, but did not always conceal her sharp elongated canine teeth, she also had.
As she was about to begin her story, Michael stayed placed in the door way with his arms crossed with a smile on his face while his wife told the two boys an adventure story about two brothers in the wilderness. Micheal's smile showed he too had sharp, elongated canines. He stood tall, as he was, his brown hair short and unkept. His thick brown eyebrows hovered over his intense golden eyes as he admired his family.
Once the two boys fell asleep, Philomena gave them a kiss on their foreheads and proceeded to get up and walk towards her husband.
“That was a cute story, my love.” Micheal spoke perfect English and had a slight English accent in his voice.
“Why thank you, Michael!” Philomena gave a youthful grin.
“ I thank you for giving our children such warm love.”
“I try my best, love,” she said more seriously.
“Ti amo molto, Philomena.”
“Ti amo molta, Micheal.”
The two proceeded into their room and went to bed. That night, Michael had a nightmare. He dreamed that he was on a boat far from land in the restless waves of some unknown ocean in the fog of an endless night. He was standing there, nothing more. Then he could hear the screams of men, women, and children. He ran, stumbling towards them to see what was the matter. He had the strongest feeling that if he did nothing they would all parish. He saw a strange figure with its back turned against him. As Michael stood paralyzed with fear his heart was thumping hard in his chest. The figure turned its head around and looked at Michael with devilish red eyes. The creature had a rotting boney facial structure. There was blood running from its lips that was beyond noticeable and as it opened its mouth to take another bite from the man he had been holding, Michael could see razor sharp teeth within its mouth that dug into the flesh of the dying man. As it took its bite, Michael had awakened trembling and ventilating heavily. It was daylight now and it was time for him to get to work, so without waking Philomena he got out of bed and walked out into the lounge. He opens the curtains to let the sun in, squinting at its brightness. He begins his day by unpacking his personal things. Once he is moved in he goes out to the carriage house and unloads his equipment there for his work.
As he was finishing unpacking in the carriage house, he hears a knock at the door. As he looks at the doorway he sees a familiar face that belongs to Gabriel Ricci.
“Ciao. My name is Gabriel Ricci,” Michael was staring with amazement, he knew this man. “Pardon my intrusion, but I hear you are the new mortician in town, is that not true?”
Michael stood emotionless for a moment before saying anything. “Si! Ciao, my name is Michael Moretti.”
“Yes. I knew your father, Michael senior. He and I were friends.”
“Oh is that so?” Micheal seemed oblivious.
“Yes, I knew him very well and I was sad to have to see him leave for England so he could study. I see you’ve fallowed in his footsteps.”
“Oh yes, I always wanted to be just like my father.” Micheal paused, “He was a great man.”
“Well, I would like to talk more on these matters; however I am unfortunately here on business.”
“I’m sorry to hear that Signore Ricci. What can I do for you?”
“It is my older brother Sontino, he’s been quite sick recently and he passed last night.
“I am greatly sorry for your loss,” there was a sincere sadness in his voice.
“Yes, well now, I have other business to do with the family today, but if you could be so kind to pick him up later tonight and prepare him for his funeral this weekend, it would be greatly appreciated.”
“Of course Signore Ricci, I will make my way to your house tonight, after night fall.”
“Good. I live south of here past town square a block down from the church. I will see you then, for I am busy at the moment.”
“Si signore, I will see you then.”
“Ciao, Dottor Moretti.”
Michael returned to the house and walked in to see his family in the living room. He greeted them and pulled Philomena aside to speak to her privately.
“What is it, love?”
“I have an appointment with Signore Ricci; Gabriel Ricci.”
Philomena stared into his eyes for a moment before asking, “Did he recognize you?”
“Yes, he thought I was my own son.”
“Oh my, thank God for that.” Her voice was filled with relief.
“Yes. I am to go to his house tonight to pick up his older brother Sonny.”
“Oh my word,” Philomena covered her mouth with her soft hands, “He had just died?”
“Yes, just last night.”
“That is so horrible. Sadly, I had hoped they had already passed on.”
“I had as well…sadly.” Michael paused. “You must stay here tonight with the children.”
“Of course, love. However the children will not be happy. Have you forgotten you promised to show them the town tonight?”
“I have forgotten; perhaps if I show them on my way to his house and leave them in the hearse that will suffice.”
“That sounds just fine, but I would like to go as well to keep the children company.”
“Of course! That will be fine, love.”
The Moretti family was dressed and ready to go out on their drive. They piled up into the hearse and began their drive. Driving through the town Michael pointed out key spots.
“There is where I got my first job as a butcher,” Michael pointed at a small meat market. “There is where I played as a boy,” Michael pointed at a small park area. “...It all looks so different now.”
The children’s eyes were fixed out the windows of the hearse and gazed out on the lively, yet small town in the early hours of night. As they stopped at a corner, Raphael asked “Who is that man there?” He pointed at an elder man dressed in black, with a white color talking with some town’s people.
“That is a man…” Michael choked up, then got his voice back and said sternly, “Don't worry about it, you need not to worry about him.” Michael said, then looking into the palm of his right hand that was covered by the black glove he always wore on the both of his hands. They drove on, and on the opposite end of Raphael, Allophones was looking out the window and saw a tremendous building with statues, and great glass windows. “What is that big building, father?”
The building was a church; Michael told his son in the same tone he had told Raphael about the man in the street, “It is a place not of your concern. You keep away from there, you hear?”
“Yes father,” Allophones complied.
The family continued to drive to the Ricci residence. Once they arrived Michael turned to the boys, “Now children, stay in the car with your mother. Can you do that for me?”
“Yes, father,” replied Allophones.
“Good. Hopefully I won’t be kept long.” Michael exited the vehicle, firmly shutting his door. He walked slowly to the wooden door that was attached to an old house that was made of cement. He knocked softly. No one seemed to give notice, though he heard shuffling in the house. He gave it a knock again, and just as he did there was an answer. It was Gabriel himself.
“Ciao, Dottor Moretti.”
“Ciao. Signore Ricci, if you and your famiglia are not ready, I may wait outside.”
“No, no. Per favore, venite in.”
“Grazie.” Michael entered, “I apologize, my Italian is a bit rusty.”
“Not a problem, Dottor.”
Micheal could see quietly sobbing men and women scattered about the room. It was truly a sad site to see. Michael was lead to a room down the hall and there he saw his deceased friend Sontino, little Sonny laying on the table with bouquets of colorful flowers scattered around him. He was old and gray; nothing resembled the youth of a man Michael once knew.
“Dottor Moretti, this is my older brother Sontino. As you can see, he was of smaller size. We all called him little Sonny for that. He hated it, but it was our way of showing affection, you see?” Asked Ricci.
“Yes,” Michael let out a soft chuckle, “I completely understand.” Michael was trying his best to keep a grip on his emotions.
“Dottor Moretti, before you take him away, I feel it would be nice if we were to say a prayer once more for him. Is that fine?” Asked Ricci, about to break into tears.
“Si. That would be just fine signore.”
They began to recite the prayer “Our Father,” “Padre nostro, che sei nei cieli...” As this was going on, everyone’s head was down and their eyes closed, Michael wanted to say the words, but they were unable to come out. The other prayers filled the room like nails on chalkboard eleven-fold. It was impossible for him to contain a thought. What seemed like forever finally came to an end with “liberaci dal male, amen.” Michael was able to think clearly once more.
“Are you alright, Dottor Moretti?” Ricci could see he was upset in some way.
“Si, si. Just a headache is all.”
“Well, you’ll be taking him with you now. You should get some rest.”
“Si, I shall. I will get the carriage ready and, come back for him.”
Ricci lead Michael out of the house and walked out with him. “Is this your famiglia, Dottor Moretti?”
“Si, my wife and my boys...they wanted to see the town, so they came along for the drive.”
“Well, signore, had I known I would have invited them in; you and your wife could have had a glass of wine.”
“We didn’t plan to intrude, signore,” Micheal was pulling his trolly from the back of the hearse.
“Dottor Moretti, your father was like family to me. You could never intrude.”
“Your hospitality is appreciated, signore. However, as you said, I am in need of rest.”
“That is certain Dottor.”
The two men walked back into the house to retrieve the body of Sontino Ricci. Micheal laid his trolly on the floor. Gabriel assisted Michael and put Sontino on the trolly and carried him out to the back of the hearse. Michael firmly shut the hatch and offered his hand out to Signore Ricci. “I apologize me and mi famiglia cannot stay a while, I must bid you farewell.”
“Of course, signore. We shall meet soon, under better terms I hope.”
“Indeed, Signore. Ciao.”
Once the Moretti family arrived to their home, they had pulled the hearse around the back of the house to Micheal's workshop. He opened his back hatch and with the assistance of Philomena, they brought out the body of Sontino Ricci into the workshop. The children fallowed them.
“Now,” Michael began, “Make sure to make a mark above the ankle. Capito?”
“Si, father.” They both excitedly replied.
What happened next was morbid. The children each, bit into Sontino Ricci, right above the ankle and the parents bit right above the wrists and began to feed on the blood of Sontino Ricci's dead body. Blood was over flowing from the wounds and dripping from their mouths as they drank. They made animalistic groans like a pack of wild wolves sharing a carcass. Soon, the family was done.
“Make sure to not miss a drop. Drink up children, you will need it for the coming days,” Philomena told her children.
“Yes mother.” The children replied as they licked what they could from around the wounds and on off of the table.
After they were finished, they all appeared different; their skin full of color, their canine not as elongated, and their thirst had been quenched. This was a satisfaction that could only be reached through the consumption oh human blood. The blood of other animals only sufficed. Philomena and the children returned to the house and Michael began to work on preparing the body for the funeral. He worked late into the early morning to conceal the wounds made by him and his family. As he was leaving his workplace he said aloud, “I am truly sorry, my old friend,” and with that, tear drops of blood began to fall from Micheal's eyes...
Michael Moretti was nervous about the funeral. He was nervous he would disappoint in presenting the body of Sontino Ricci, however he was more nervous about being in the church. He went to the church alone with the dead body. Gabriel Ricci greeted him and Michael presented him with the body. Gabriel began to weep. “Is he presentable Signore Ricci?” Micheal choked out.
“Si. Si Dottor, he is. He looks almost as though he is only in dream.” Gabriel answered with a smile. The two men gathered two other men to help them carry the casket in which the dead body laid into the church. Michael stared at all the statues and carvings of angels and holy figures in the large building. He felt as if all eyes were on him. Once the body was placed at the head of the church Michael spoke to Gabriel, “My apologies signore,” Micheal started hastily, “I am afraid I will not be attending the service. I am quite unavailable at the moment, however I will return to pick him up and take him to the burial site.” Micheal looked flushed.
“No need to apologize. I understand Dottor. I will see you soon.”
“Yes, see you soon,” Michael left as swiftly as he could. He lied. He really wasn’t busy at the moment. He just felt that the church was not a place for his kind. Just being there, filled his stomach with pangs. As he drove home, thoughts of his past filled his mind. When he got home, he exited the car and vomited blood onto the dirt making a maroon colored area of mud. He then entered his home, and sat in his chair in the living room. Again looking at his glove covered hand. He removed the glove revealing a gnarled scare of a crucifix with some beads scattered, resembling a rosary. He remembered how he got the scar and remembered what he felt about his life and his God.
Philomena walked in the room to see Michael staring at his palm. She walked over to him and knelt down in front of him grabbing his hand saying, “My dear, sweet love. Do not ponder over these things. Remember what I told you on our wedding night. Our love is proof enough that we are not damned.”
“I know. And God has not rejected me as His son. He did answer my prayers,” Michael agreed gripping tightly on Philomena’s hands. “I must go back to the church now.” The couple kissed then parted.
Michael arrived a little early waiting for the guests to exit before trying to remove the body back into the carriage of his hearse. There was a small parade to the burial site in Sontino Ricci’s honor. A small band played slow tempo-ed songs that were meant for such occasions. Michael, driving his automobile slowly behind the small marching band was ahead of all the guests who were some in horse drawn carriages and others on foot. Micheal felt little sadness, mostly because it was hard to believe all of this was happening. That he was burring one of his oldest friends so soon after his arrival back to Camucia.
Once they arrived at the burial site every one gathered around as they lowered the body into the grave. The air was silent. The only noise that was heard was the sound of light weeping, until all was broken by the words of a priest. He had said how much the Ricci family had meant to him and how much he adored dear old Sonny. Then he ended with a prayer that gave Michael another excruciating headache.
Once the funeral was over he said his goodbyes to the Ricci family and began to walk to his automobile when suddenly his attention was grabbed by a man.
“Dottor Moretti! Mi scusi, Dottor Moretti!” yelled the man.
“Yes, signore?” Asked Michael.
“Dottor Moretti, I understand it that you are new in town, is that not so?” The man was gasping for his breath. He appeared to be older, but Micheal could see his young brown eyes hidden behind the metallic rimmed glasses he wore.
“You are correct. I just finished moving in not too long ago.”
“Very nice. Well, on the behalf of myself, Mario Esposito and my family and friends, I invite you to a dinner party. It will be held at my home in the southern outskirts of town. It is in the honor of my engagement to my dear fiancée, Signorina Carla Costa. I would very much enjoy getting to know you Dottor, under much happier circumstances of course.”
“That sounds just fine signore. If I may, it would be nice to bring along my wife,” returned Michael.
“But of course Dottor, it would be pleasant to meet her as well. Do not worry about details now, Dottor. I will send you a letter with all the details. Please, do not let me hold you from your business.”
“That is just fine Signore Esposito. I look forward to seeing you soon.”
“Ciao.” Michael shook Signore Esposito’s hand and then left.
Michael proceeded home to tell his wife of the invitation and decided it would be nice to make some new friends and a great way to meet the rest of the newer residence of Camucia. They would prepare and plan for the party over the week. However, they were puzzled as to what to do with the children. “We can’t leave them with anyone,” said Philomena.
“Well we can’t take them with us,” returned Michael. “I suppose there is no other option other than to leave them here.”
“I wish not to leave them alone on their own, Michael. What if something were to happen to them?”
“They are strong and mature for their age. They shall be safe, my love. I promise you this.”
“I suppose there is no threat and they are able to take care of themselves, so...I suppose you are right.”
“My dear, do not fret. It will be fine.”
Michael was in a deep sleep. In that sleep he would dream of the past. Dream of what had happened to him on that horrid day. Dream of his friend in England, of the first time he saw Philomena. Some thing would come clear to him in his dreams, but may be forgotten by his awakening. It all started with a trip to England. He had been planning it for some time, but did not leave until the death of his father. He wanted to attend Oxford to become a real doctor, unlike his father who had been only a mortician. He boarded a ship to England, the S. S. Fede.
He remembers the trip. The cool ocean breaze going through his hair and the smell of the ocean running up his nose with every fresh breath he took. However, on the last night. He remeberes waking with a start. He had heard a woman's scream. He listened for on ship authorities, but heard no one. Then, another cry; this one from a small child, possibly male. Micheal whiped off his blanket, grabed his surgical knife and jolted down the cabbin hall and out on to the deack where he would see hell for the first time.
It seems a fog had plagued the ship. It was so dense he could only see about two yards in front of him. All he could see on deck were lifeless bodies on the ground with trails of blood scattered throughout the ship.
“What in God's name is happening...” Micheal let out in an aloud whisper. He then began to hear screams and wails of the men, women, and children on board in the distance. He walked towards the screams to see what the matter was. Every time he came upon a person, they were dead. All the women, children, and men had their necks ripped open by some awful fiend and blood was found flowing out their necks. Soon, there was a moment of silence, and then suddenly a man’s dieing groan sounded directly behind him. He turned slowly. At first all he saw were two small, red glowing orbs. As he approached he saw they belonged to that of a monster, the monster that would change his life forever. He was pale with pointed ears and a nearly bald head with few long strands of hair flowing from his skull. The monster appeared to be wearing nothing but a dark cloak that hung over it's back. His glaring eyes, blood soaked jagged teeth filled mouth, bony face, and long claws looked nothing of a human. He was a monster. Michael was first paralyzed with fear; he could not look away from those blood red eyes filled with hatred and all that is evil. The two, man and beast, stared at one another for a brief moment on the silent boat. Micheal drew his knife, and then the beast dropped the man’s lifeless body and lunged with it's swift boney legs at Michael. Very quickly the beast bit into Micheal's neck causing him to yell in excruciating pain. At that moment, Michael drove the blade through the creature’s back and into its heart. The creature ceased to drink Micheal's blood and let out a haggard screech that pierced the ears like thousands of needles. Blood shot out of its mouth and landed on Micheal's face, some of it getting into his mouth. The blood tasted like cold copper. Michael gripped his blade. The body fell to the floor, still alive, it was breathing heavily. Blood was flowing from it's mouth and out its back. It began to laugh in a deep, rough voice. Michael then took the blade and cut it's throat. The creature began to decompose right before his eyes and soon turned to dust. Michael then fainted.
He awoke in an English hospital bed in great pain. He had a fever and would be bed ridden for two weeks. Over these two weeks, he would have horrendous pains in his neck where he was bitten along with night terrors of the event but would not yet remember what really happened. The taste of the blood lingered in his throat.
Once he was well enough, the nurses told him what had happened. That there was a horrible accident and that he was the only survivor found on the ship. All he had were fragments of dreams he chose not to believe. It all felt so real to him, but who would believe him when he didn't himself. He decided to keep it to himself and go on with his reason for being in England, to study.
In time he had healed. The wound on his neck was gone, not a scar. He was released from the hospitals care. Micheal felt fine, really. Although, as he walked towards his purchased residence he was hit with fatigue. He became dizzy and confused. He almost forgot where he was. An elder Englishman walked up to him and asked, “You alright, boy? You look like you are about to spew your dinner?”
“I...I...” Michael found himself staring at his neck. His old, wrinkled white neck that was throbbing from the blood passing through his jugular. Micheal did not blink, but leaned in closer, and closer to the elder man's neck.
“Now what do you think you're doing?” Shouted a man.
“Wha-?” Micheal realized what he was doing was strange indeed.
“What seems to be the matter here friends?” Asked the man who happened to be a police officer. He seemed tall, but only because of his police hat. He was wide and had a full grown curled mustache. He had a mean look in his eyes.
“Well you see...” the old man began.
The words became muffled to Micheal, he could not understand what was going on. All he could hear were the hearts of the two men pounding like toddlers playing the drums. Micheal grabbed a hold of the police officer and showing his teeth, groaned at the officer.
“Now, boy! You let go of me if ya know what will be good for ya.”
Micheal looked with empty eyes on the officer and as he was about to strike the elder man grabbed him from behind and the police officer blew his whistle as he tried to restrain Micheal. As back-up came to aide the policeman Micheal blacked out.
He awoke in a rusty prison cell. He recognized the police officer there. Knowing he was in a prison cell, Michael asked “What am I doing here?” in a groggy voice.
“You attacked a police officer.” He answered smugly, “Seems like you'll be in here for a while, boy.”
“I...” Micheal thought for a second, then decided to say nothing. He was unsure of what he had done, what had happened to him. What was I thinking? He thought.
He sat there all day, feeling ill as the day went on. Then suddenly, the noises of everything were muted again, all he could hear were the heart beats. He couldn't take it. His mouth was watering, images of the police officer's throat being ripped out by his own mouth was the only thing he could think about. He screamed with all his heart and soul. Micheal Moretti had lost it. He screamed with such might and force his throat burned. He gripped the bars of the prison cell and screamed at the officer and told him, “If you don't let me out of here, I don't know what will happen, but it can't be good.” The officer left the prisoner and Micheal gave up and blacked out.
When Micheal awoke, he could see he was being examined by a slightly older man. Michael felt too weak to resist and instead asked, “Who are you?”
“I am Dr. Tarasov. I'm a psychologist. And you are?”
“ I'm Michael Moretti. I came here from Italy to go to Oxford.”
“Oh really? What major?”
“Really? Then may I ask you, do you know what's wrong with you?”
“I don't know. I can't remember anything from the boat.”
“Really? Repressed memories do you think?”
“I'm not sure what it is, but you have to help me. Please Dr. Tarasov.”
“I will help you. I'll bring you to my sanitarium.”
“Please, just get me out of here,” Micheal sounded desperate.
Dr. Tarasov took Micheal to his sanitarium for further evaluation. He studied Micheal for several hours before he declared him sane. The final conclusion was that he had a fever that drove him temporarily mentally unstable. However, Tarasov knew there was more to it than that.
Tarasov and Micheal were sitting in Tarasov's office. His office was filled with books in many different languages. There was a map behind him with marks on places he had visited. A telescope was pointed out his large window. A world globe was set next to his desk that was cluttered with paper work and an oil lamp.
“So tell me, Micheal. Do you feel up to leaving?”
“Well...” Micheal thought over his situation and realized his urge to attack had not fully subsided. “No. Not quite. Would it be possible for me to be kept here?”
“Here? In this asylum?”
“Yes, if you would be so kind to home me for a while.”
“Well, you see all we have are patient rooms. They aren't the most pleasant.”
“It's fine. I feel...I need to reflect on myself for a while. Until then, could you treat me as any other patient?”
“So, you're committing yourself?”
“Well, yes. I suppose I am. I did not think of it like that, but yes. Will you take me?”
Tarasov saw to it that Micheal was well taken care off and analyzed daily for several weeks. Every day Tarasov would ask if he remembered anything from the ship, but no memories were retrieved. One night, Micheal became quite ill. His throat burned with maroon vomit. His eyes ran blood. He couldn't understand why and had no strength to call for help. He saw a rat in his window seal. It was sitting in between the bars as if he was looking right at him. Micheal gathered the little strength he had left and snatched the rat up. He held it in his hands, felt its pulse that seemed to increase with each second. The rat's blood was pumping so heavily. He could feel the fear running through the rat's veins. With animal instinct Micheal sunk his teeth into the vermin and began to drink its blood. It was as if life itself was flowing into him. His throat felt better. His strength was becoming restored. He could feel the euphoria sweeping over him. The rat was sucked dry. Micheal could think clearer than ever. He felt...human? No, this was different. He felt superior. He felt undying, strong, and yet beastly. At this moment, he realized he had forever change and that night he would dream for the first time in weeks.
The next morning when Tarasov came to check up on Micheal, Micheal was standing there in the cell well put together.
“You seemed to have gained your composure, felling better are we?”
“Indeed, Tarasov. The night has opened my eyes, and I do not believe I will ever see the same again.”
“Let's go to my office, shall we?”
Micheal told his story of his first feeding. The room was quiet.
“You have not eaten solid food since the ship?” Tarasov inquired.
“That is correct, I have not.”
“After drinking the rats blood and dreaming of your past, do you now understand?”
“No. I'm afraid that the events that have occurred since I left home have done nothing but opened more unanswered questions.”
“Have you heard of something called, a vampire? Vampiro in your native tongue.”
“I cannot say I'm one for ghost stories, Dr.”
“Please, call me Nicoli. You are no longer a patient of mine. However, there is more I would like to talk to you about. Where will you be staying?”
“I was promised a room in the dorms, however the term has already commenced, and I'm afraid my place has been taken.”
“I will make a phone call to Oxford and let them know that you had a fever that changed your thinking, and that you have fully recovered. They should pardon you for your tardiness.”
“Thank you, Nicoli. I don't know how to repay you!”
“Let me examine you further.”
“I beg pardon?”
“I want to meet with you weekly, and have you tell me of you experiences with the new life you have been granted.”
“A vampire, Micheal, you see is a man or woman who is no longer living, but not dead. They feed off of the blood of the living. They are strongest at night, and only at night can they use their mysterious powers.”
“Powers? This sounds like something out of a Bram Stocker novel. You must be joking.”
“It is true, I have read many works of fiction, some including cases such as your own. But tell me this, Micheal. Where do ideas of such things come from?”
“Made up legends made to instill fear upon a group of people, usually children. Usually these legends are-”
“Based off of some experience. Wouldn't you agree?”
“Uh, I was about to say imagination, but I suppose experiences work as well.”
“Indeed, the imagination is great and comes up with some concepts. However, my thought is the imagination simply intensifies the truth to be something of fiction. However, behind each work of fiction, there is some truth. The sailors of yore would often describe great beasts within the ocean. Each day, those beasts are being classified by oceanographers as whales and other large sea life. Our imaginations get the best of us at times. However, it is clear as day what has become of you. Of course I must confirm some things before coming to a conclusion. Please, let me examine you a week from now and tell me of your experiences, whatever they may be. Whatever crime against life you have made, I will not judge you, my friend.”
“Of course, Nicoli. You may come visit me a week from now.”
A week passed and Nicoli came to visit Micheal at his dorm as promised. “We're in luck,” Micheal started, “My dorm mate has left for the day on some business. We'll be able to speak privately this way.”
“That's good. So how has your week been adjusting to classes and Oxford in general?”
“It been great really. I feel foreign, yet normal. I'm just glad I know as much English as I do. The classes capture my interest and the company is good.”
“That's good to hear.”
“Tell me, how has your week been, Nicoli?”
“It has been well. Dealing with patients as usual. No one interesting I'm afraid. Though, I've been researching all week as well. It has served me some.”
“Is that so? What have you been researching?”
“Uh, you're still assisting on that hypothesis I see.”
“indeed. Not only have I been noting descriptions from fictional books on the subject, but ancient lore as well as murders that have been committed where the victim has had blood taken by some way.”
“Is that a fact?”
“Indeed. I have stumbled upon some interesting cases. The marks made where the victim's blood was taken have been described as animalistic in nature and most of them have been dismissed as animal attacks. However, I came upon one that was slightly different. A woman was found, in France. Her neck was slit and she had several markings that seemed to be like bite marks on her arms and legs.”
“What does that mean?”
“I'm thinking a group of them fell upon her, slit her throat so she could not scream while multiple persons drank her blood.”
“How do you not know these are acts committed by similar insane criminals?”
“I don't, but let me ask you something. What have you been eating this past week?”
Micheal stayed quiet for a moment before answering, “Bugs. Rats. Anything small and alive I could get my hands on.”
“As I thought, and right when you had a full grown man sharing the same room as you. You are no demon. Demons do not exist. Though, it would seem you fall into that category. You live off the blood of the living. I've also noticed your teeth. They are sharp like a beast's. Not like anyone I have ever seen before. Tell me, have they always been so sharp?”
“No,” Micheal touched his teeth and felt the sharpness, “They have not.”
“Now, a test.” Nicoli pulled out a pocket knife and pierced his finger, dropping blood onto the floor. Micheal's eyes grew wide, and he lunged towards Nicoli's feet and began to lick up the blood off of the wooden floor.
Micheal soon realized Nicoli was still producing blood from his finger, he looked at it, licking his lips. The blood was like a priceless ruby waiting to be claimed. Instead, Micheal threw himself off the floor, rushing to his bag and grabbed a small pouch out emptying the contents of the pouch into his hand. It was a rosary and as soon as it hit his hand, Micheal gripped it and the rosary singed his hand. Micheal let out a loud yell and dropped the rosary. Nicoli picked it up and examined it.
“Are you alright, Micheal?” Nicoli asked in a caring voice.
“Yes. My hand, it burns.”
“Let me see it.” Micheal showed him his right hand and there was a crucifix and some beads burned into his skin. “It is said,” Nicoli started as he searched for something to wrap Micheal's hand in, “that vampires exposed to religious items such as a crucifix, holy water, or a holy wafer will experience pain.”
“Are you serious?”
“Indeed. Though, I do not believe in God, this does support my hypothesis.”
The room remained quiet. Then the silence was broken by Micheal when he asked, “So will you continue to examine me?”
“Yes. I will visit you every week, until I fully understand you situation. If that is fine with you.”
“Good. I will be going now. I trust you know how to tend to your wound. I will see you next week. Good day, Micheal.”
“Good day, Nicoli.” Micheal was hesitant to say something, but decided to anyways, “Nicoli!”
“You're wrong, you know? Demons do exist. A demon did this to me. And God too, exists. He is punishing me for my sins.”
“And what sins are those?”
Micheal had no answer.
“You ponder on that, and tell me if you still believe in demons and God,” and with that Nicoli left.
The fallowing week Nicoli came to visit.
“Come in,” Micheal offered a chair.”
“Thank you, Micheal. How have you been?”
“I've been well. It seems as time goes on I feel better and better about myself, though certain things still trouble me.” Micheal looked at his right palm that was wrapped in bandages still.
“I see. So have you thought of what I told you? Your sins?”
“Yes. I know I have not committed something so horrid that I would receive a punishment this grand, but maybe there is reason behind what has happened to me.”
“And what is that?”
“I don't know. But I feel someday, He will make it clear to me.”
“So no answer yet? You really mustn't think of such things, Micheal. God is is but a myth. The world has been enlightened and the Bible will one day be a work of fiction.”
“No. You're a brilliant man, Nicoli. You have a great mind, but you're wrong about this. There is a God, I have felt his love.”
“And his wrath?” Nicoli pointed at Micheal's wound.
“This is not the work of God. The devil has tried to recruit me to do is bidding, but I revolt against him and all his empty promises. I will always have faith in my God, no matter what comes my way.”
“Well, I guess there's no arguing with you on that matter. With that done, how are you coping with your meals?”
“I'm doing well. I go out for walks and find rats and other vermin in alleyways.”
“Good. And what about your human relations?”
“I try not to get to close to anyone. If I do...It is as if I can hear their blood being pumped throughout their body.”
“How do you expect to be a doctor?”
“Well you see, my father was a mortician. I first, came here to be something better than just that, but in the end, I would like to be more like him. That way, I won't have to deal with live patients.”
“Good plan. How are your studies going anyways?”
“Very well. It seems the instructors feel I have a lot of potential, especially with anatomy.”
“That's fantastic to hear.”
“I would like to try something.”
“Oh, and what is that Nicoli?”
“Hand my your wrist.” Nicoli offered out his hand.
“All right,” Micheal handed over his hand.
Nicoli held his wrist for a few moments then said, “Just as I thought.”
“What is it?”
“You no longer have a pulse.”
Micheal checked his pulse himself and found nothing. “What does this mean?” He asked.
“It is another sign that you are among the living dead.”
“Living dead? Rubbish! You can't be serious.”
“I am. You've seen for yourself. All of these changes that are happening to you. I can't explain them, but it is truly phenomenal.”
“What does this mean? Am I dead?”
“Like I said before, you are not dead nor living. You are what some call the living dead.”
“The living dead...” It was difficult to wrap his mind around it, but after everything that had happened to him, Micheal excepted the fact that he was no longer human.
Nicoli would continue to visit and examine Micheal for the years to come. They would become friends and talk about things from their life experiences to intellectual debates. Another thing was noticed, Micheal should have aged after five years, but to Nicoli, he looked the same on as he did on the day they first met. Micheal was a thirty year old man in a twenty-four year old body. They decided what changed Micheal was a combination of Micheal getting his blood drained by the creature that was on the ship as well as ingesting some of the monsters blood. They found he had keen senses that surpassed a normal human being and that appeared to be more efficient at night. When tears were shed, it was blood that ran from his eyes. He was also more agile and his strength had increased. Micheal had truly changed to something great, monstrous, but great.
Micheal would go on to open his business of being a mortician. With that job, he was able to afford his own place and could live freely. He also developed a way to suppress his lust for human blood. Whenever he would get a new body to take care of he would drink some of it's blood in a way that was inconspicuous. It not only repressed his urge to drink human blood, but also disguised his peculiar appearance, for when he drank human blood his skin became fuller in color and his teeth didn't appear as elongated.
One night, Micheal and Nicoli went out to see a musical adaptation of Hamlet. It was mildly entertaining to Micheal and Nicoli's standards of theater. During an intermission, he looked about the room and locked eyes with a young woman. She had light skin, with beautiful brown/green eyes and hair as black as the night flowing from her head. He had never seen anyone like her in England. She seemed almost out of place and there was an aspect of her that reminded him of his home. “Who's that?” Nicoli asked.
“Who?” Micheal tried to seem oblivious.
“The girl you're eye-ing. Do you know her?”
“No. I've never seen her before.” He was determined to meet her.
After the play was over, they left their aisle and began to exit. They came close to the young woman and Nicoli nudged him forcefully causing Micheal to bump into the woman. “Excuse me miss,” Micheal started, “I did not mean to stumble into you.”
“Oh, it's not a problem, I'm quite alright.”
Her voice filled Micheal with some feeling he had yet to feel. He had to pursue her.. “Say, would you by chance need ride home? Perhaps we could share a cab? It will be my way of apologizing for my clumsiness.”
“No, that won’t be necessary sir.”
“I live not too far. I can walk.
“Alright then, I suppose I will leave it at that.”
“But sir, I could always use a gentleman such as yourself to escort me home. It is a lonely walk after all.”
“I will gladly accompany you miss…”
“Miss Philomena Ferrari.”
“Pleased to meet your acquaintance; Miss Philomena Ferrari. I am Dr. Michael Moretti.”
“Pleased to meet you as well, Dr. Moretti.
The two would meet often, and shortly fell in love. It was difficult at times when he came into close contact with people, not to eyeball their flesh in want of blood, however when it came to Philomena, it was simple. He could touch her and only think of his love for her, not his thirst for blood. He wanted to ask her for her hand in marriage, but did not feel right asking her without telling her what had happened to him on the ship from Italy. He finally told her. Pointed out why he was pale and why his teeth were so odd. She did not want to believe it, “This cannot be,” she said.
“I know it sounds like an old tale, but I ensure you Philomena, I am no longer human. Why do you never see me eat? See me drink? Look at my scar.” He took off his glove and showed her the scar of the crucifix. "Look! Feel my heart.” Michael brought Philomena’s hand to his chest. There was so pulse. Philomena had a puzzled expression. She didn't understand why he was this way. Micheal explained everything he could to her. He told her everything of his experiences until this point.
Philomena’s eyes swelled with tears. “I don’t want to believe it! I cannot! I have never felt a presence like yours, so kind and loving. No damned being could ever make me feel so.”
“I only tell you what I know. I am most myself when the sun is down. I feel weak during the day. Animals fear me. I am what I have become; a monster, and maybe, I am what I always was as well; a man. I feel more human when I am with you. I love you, that is why I have told you this. If you wish to never see me again, I do not blame you. In fact, I encourage the idea.”
“No! No! My love, I could never. I believe you are different. You are no monster. You love me don’t you?”
“Of course I do. I love you.”
“No monster can love. You are so much more than what you think you are and to prove that to you. I...I want to be like you.” Micheal was stunned with what she had said. “Do you know a way for me to become like you?” She inquired eagerly.
“No! I forbid it!”
“Michael, please! Do it for me! Do it, because you love me, because I love you! I don’t want you to live like this all on your own. Please.”
“Well, I must reject your proposal.” Tears began to fall from her face. “I can't go on knowing I will grow old when you, stay young. To look unpleasant to you in old age, it makes me feel ill.”
“You could never look unpleasant to me. You are the most beautiful being my eyes have ever laid eyes upon. I mean this, you will be beautiful all your years.” Philomena continued to weep. Michael remained quietly looking into Philomena's sad eyes before he finally broke, “Fine, it will be done.”
"Thank you, my love; you won't regret this I promise you!"
"I know, I know." He knew he would never feel as human as he did with her had she left. He loved her so; he did not want life without her. She feeling the same they decided to have a secret wedding. Philomena’s change would be their symbol of marriage.
They waited for the fallowing night. They were in Philomena's room, on her bed. They began by kissing each other. Micheal's kisses made their way to her neck. He kissed her several times over. He found the idea of hurting her repulsive. However he knew what he had to do.
"Now, my love." Philomena whispered into his ear.
He slowly opened his mouth, showing his fangs. He slowly touched her neck with his teeth, holding very still. He then slowly drove his sharp teeth into her flesh. She gasped with pain and gripped tightly onto Micheal's arms. Crimson blood flowed from her neck onto the pure white sheets of her bed. The blood continued to flow until Philomena began to release Micheal's arms. He then ceased sucking her blood. "Now, my love." He used his nails to cut his neck. Dark blood began to flow out from the wound. "Taste my blood."
She lethargically put her head on his neck and began to suckle like an ill infant. She suddenly began to moan and tremble. She fell back into Micheal's arms. Blood continued to run out of both their necks. He held her in his arms as she trembled. He put his hand on her chest and felt her heart as it slowly beat. It went on slowly until he could feel it no more. Her eyes slowly opened. "Ti amo," she spoke softly before passing out.
"Ti amo." He laid her down so she could rest. He sat at the edge of the bed, and while tending to her wound he contemplated what he had just done to the the one girl he had ever loved.
Surprisingly she was awake and nearly well in just a few days. Her skin had lost its color and her canine teeth had begun to become elongated. She soon looked even more radiant than before. She was truly stunning once the fever passed. The couple felt closer to one another having had made the exchange of blood. Michael accepted that it was good the way things were. They were able to share everything. They had finally became one. Once Philomena was fully well and adapted to her new self Michael surprised her with a wedding ring. He had got himself one as well; simple matching golden wedding bands with their initials carved into each to show their marriage to one another. They enjoyed their marriage and lived in London for several years.
After several decades of Micheal's mortician services to the country, he had made a substantial amount of money. They had been living around London for quite some time and decided to go back to Italy and live there for a while. Before going back Michael had decided to buy a hearse automobile, to help his business and make travel easier. They went on their way by boat and docked in Livorno, Italy. The drive from there was fine. They encountered no problems and caught plenty of food out in the wilderness close to the road.
One night in the middle of the Italian countryside; they saw a horrible sight on the side of the road, two young boys; they were lying there lifelessly. "Michael, stop!" Philomena shouted. Michael came to an abrupt stop. The couple exited the car. They saw the boys lying there, “It does not seem like they will be making it,” Micheal said sadly.
Philomena knelt down beside the smallest, grabbing hold of him. A small voice came from his mouth, "Mother?" His eyes remained closed and tears rolled down the side of his face. Philomena looked up at Michael. Red tears were running from her eyes. "Michael. We can't leave them here to die. I won't."
"What are we supposed to do? They seem to be ill, but I'm not sure what illness they have I can't cure them, I have no medicine with me." Michael was clueless as to what to do to help them in their near-death state.
"We could turn them."
"They are only children, Philomena. I don't know how they would react or how they will be able to control their urges!”
"Please Michael! We have to do something! Please! I don't want them to die. They're so young."
Micheal remembered a time when Philomena said she would like to have children someday. However, now that she is undead she is unable to bare a child. "You're right. We have to do something."
Michael knelt down next to the older boy. They held them in their arms and bit their wrists sucking some blood from them, but not for long. Philomena wiped the blood off of her cheeks, then bit her own wrist to make blood come out and let the blood drip into the young boy’s mouth. Michael cut his wrist with his small pocket knife to let some blood drip into the older boy's mouth. It was silent after the transfer of blood.
"They aren't moving," Philomena said sadly.
"Maybe, we were too late."
They held the children in their arms for a few more moments then suddenly the young boys began to move. They coughed and groaned. The younger boy asked again, "Mother?"
"I'm right here. I am here," Philomena said comfortingly.
As they drove through the countryside of Italy, the children recuperated. However they had lost their memory. They could not remember who they were or where they were from, as if they had been reborn. They were named Allophones and Raphael. They both had grown attached to their new parents and all became close as a family as their journey home went on. The Moretti family was now complete.
Michael and Philomena were getting ready in their formal wear. Michael was dressed in a black and white tuxedo. Philomena dressed in a purple silhouette dress that complimented her form. As they were finishing up getting ready they spoke with the children one last time. "Now, Raphael, you are responsible for yourself and your brother. Capito?"
"Allophones, you listen to your older brother, you hear?" Philomena reminded her son.
"Alright," Michael started, "You two be safe and be ready for bed by the time we get back. I love you boys."
"I love you too father," the two kids returned.
"Ti amo." Philomena added.
"I love you too mother," both the boys returned.
The parents left their children locked in the house alone. The two children began to play with their wooden toys. It wasn't long before Raphael got up from the floor and looked out the window.
"Raphael! Come play with me," begged Allophones.
"I have a better idea, Al. Let's go into town."
"What? We aren't supposed to."
"Father didn't say that."
"But he didn't say we could either, brother."
"No, but he said I was in charge, and I want to explore."
"Brother! We can't!"
"Well you can either stay here, or come with me." Raphael opened the window, "Either way, I'm going."
Allophones stood there, watching Raphael go out the window and heard his brother ask, "Are you coming with me or not?"
"Alright," Allophones jumped out of the window after his brother and they began on their journey to town.
Michael and Philomena arrived at the dinner party just on time. They walked in a little nervous about meeting with the town’s people, so they made their way to a table and sat down until they could spot Signore Esposito. The couple noticed everyone there had looked older; there was hardly anyone who looked of their age. Michael and Philomena were enjoying their selves when Michael felt a tap on his shoulder. He turned his head to find Signore Esposito. Michael stood up quickly, Philomena fallowed and Michael shook hands with Signore Esposito and introduced his wife to him. They greeted and Esposito said, “Now, you two must meet my wife. She is truly beautiful like Signora Moretti here.”
“Grazie Signore,” Philomena responded as they were lead to a table where a beautiful young woman was sitting alone.
“Here, sit with us please,” Requested Esposito.
“Si, si! Sit with us,” insisted Signora Costa.
“Grazie!” Thanked the Moretti couple and gladly sat down.
“My sweet Carla Costa, soon to be Carla Esposito. This is Dottor Michael Moretti and Signora Philomena Moretti.”
“I am pleased to meet you. You are indeed a lucky man Signore Esposito.” Michael said kindly kissing Carla’s hand.
“Grazie, and please, call me Mario.”
“Of course,” responded Micheal.
“You are quite beautiful Signora Costa,” Greeted Philomena as she shook her hand.
“Carla is fine, and thanks you. You, Miss Philomena are quite radiant yourself.”
“Grazie,” Philomena blushed from all of the compliments.
“So, the word around town is you moved here from London. Is this true?” asked Mario.
“Yes, that is quite true. My father lived here and he had moved to England to study and that is where I grew up fallowing his footsteps becoming a mortician and once I married Philomena it made me realize how much I wanted to go back to Italy, so here we are.” Of course that was just Micheal's cover in case anyone recognized him.
“Well that is just great of you to come back to your father’s land,” complimented Mario, “and you Philomena, is your famiglia around here?”
“No, my famiglia is from Roma.”
“Oh, well isn’t that nice. Do you plan on making any visitations down there?”
Philomena looked at Michael for approval to reply. Michael simply smiled.
“Si. We should be making our way up there in the winter, after we have all settled in,” answered Philomena with a smile.
"Well isn't that nice," Stated Carla.
"I sure am glad you two came. There are not many persons of our own age in town at the moment. Mostly everyone heads to the bigger European cities as your father did, Michael."
"Yes, I noticed that.” Micheal said with glee, “It is such a nice, calm place. I do not see why one would leave."
"Yes, I agree. It is a beautiful town," stated Mario.
The four of them went on to converse about their lives and their work. The two couples seemed to get along quite well.
Raphael and Allophones were entering town square. Their eyes wandered with excitement as they watched people drive by in carriages and people sell things on the street in the early night. They passed by an ice shop called Ice di Toni. An older man with a gray mustache and a balding head called out to the kids from the shop, "Hey voi ragazzi!" The two brothers were startled and stood still staring at the old man. "Here! Take some flavored ice!" The boys stayed still and said nothing. The older man handed them two shaved ice with red coloring with a huge friendly smile on his face that made his eyes squint into his wrinkled face. The kids took them and walked away as Allophones said "Grazie!" The kids licked the delicious looking ice and made sour faces. "Ugh! This is terrible!" yelled Raphael. They both dropped the ice and continued to walk.
They found themselves at the steps of a huge edifice. They both looked up and saw the Gothic Cathedral with its colorful windows dimly lit up looking like a tremendous being that cast it's shadow over them. "Let's go inside..." Raphael said as he began to walk up the steps.
"But we aren't allowed," Allophones said softly fallowing his brother. Raphael pushed open the door with a bit of an effort. It was all silent in the cathedral. All that could be heard was their own footsteps. All was still and calm as they made their way through the light-less church. As soon as they got there they stood still staring at a huge crucifix with Jesus hanging on it. It was in great detail showing his famished body with blood dripping from his wounds. "Who is that?" asked Allophones.
"I don't know..." answered Raphael when suddenly a huge voice from behind them said, "Il nostro salvatore."
The two boys turned and saw an older man in black with a white color. They both looked at him intensely. "My sons, what brings you here at this time?" he asked.
"We aren't your sons," stated Raphael.
"Everyone in Camucia is my son or daughter. You see, I am a father to the community."
The boys stared at the man.
"Are you two new in town?" asked the priest.
"Yes." said Raphael seriously.
"Has your family been to church yet?"
"What is church?" asked Raphael.
"This is church. You are in it. It is a place of worship. Here, we worship God and his son," the priest pointed at the crucifix.
The boys stared for a moment. "Raphael, I'm scared," whispered Allophones.
"Yes, let's go now," whispered back Raphael.
"There's no reason to be frightened my child," the priest reached out to rub Raphael's head. As he touched him, Raphael flinched and the priest was filled with a fear; a fear of something unholy and dark. "Who are you two? Where did you come from?"
"He's scaring me, Raphael!" The priest noticed Allophones's sharp teeth and the blood that began to run out of is eyes.
"You...You are demons. Vampiri!" The priest yelled angrily.
Allophones began to cry out even louder.
"You are demons! You are not welcome here!" Yelled the priest and the two children ran out of the cathedral and ran all the way back home.
Michael and Philomena had a great night having made new friends and met with some important towns people. The night was a success. They made their way home and found the children sitting in the floor quietly. "Are you two still awake?" asked Michael. They sat their quietly.
"Why so quiet, loves?" asked Philomena.
There was still no reply.
"Is something wrong?" asked Michael,"…Raphael? What happened?” demanded Michael in a strong voice
“We left the house father.” answered Allophones.
Philomena gasped and covered her mouth in fear that something had happened to them, she then swiftly made her way to them to hold them closely.
“What happened? Where did you go?” asked Michael sternly.
“Michael, can you not see they are frightened? You mustn’t be so hard on them,” refuted Philomena.
“Philomena, they could have been far worse off, we need to know what happened.”
Philomena knew he was right, agreeing she said “Your father is right. Tell us what happened.”
As the children told their story of their fearful encounter with the priest in the cathedral, Micheal's face turned from serious to disbelief to concern, and Philomena’s corresponded with his.
“Do you two have any idea how much trouble this puts us in?” Michael started his lecture, “We told you two how we are different and other people won’t understand our ways. We cannot be unveiled or we will be cast out, or worse.”
“We cannot stay can we?” asked Philomena sadly.
“No, we leave tonight; at once.” Michael ordered.
The family began to pack their things and Michael went to his workshop to pack up his tools into the hearse. Whilst Michael was finishing up packing he heard a crowed emerge from the night like the rising sun. Then suddenly he heard a crash of glass. He ran out to see a mob of men and women with torches and various weaponry guided by a priest, the man Michael saw in the street the other week, the man from the funeral, and now knowing the same man who frightened his children. The mob was throwing rocks at the house and yelling words like demoni, diavolo, and vampiri. The children were still inside with Philomena, the children ran to their mother and she put her loving arms around them as if shielding them from possible debris flying into the house. The children began to cry and the blood began to spill from their eyes. “No, no, no children. Do not cry, it will only make you weak,” said Philomena as her eyes became bloodshot, on the verge of crying.
Michael ran to the front of the house where the mob was throwing up his hands yelling “Si prega di semettere! Stop!” The mob held off and was silent. “Please, we are not what you believe us to be.”
“Are you the father of those demons in there?” Asked one of the mob members.
“Si. There are not demons, they are but children.”
“Then you!” the priest pointed at Michael, “You are a demon too! Un vampiro!”
“Please! Do you not fear us! We are not evil!”
“We fear you if you fear this!” the priest held up his silver crucifix that reflected the fire of the torches like a glorious mirror. Michael slowly drew back, looking down, away from the cross.
“So you are an agent of the devil.”
Michael, still with his head down said “No. I am a man of God who has been cursed by an evil to where I am tempted to commit mortal sin ever day of my life. Is that not punishment enough?”
“You will not trick me devil!”
“If the Devil is tricking you it has already been done. I see the hatred in your eyes. It reminds me of my nightmares.” Michael remembered the being that changed him and the evil in it's eyes.
“Your nightmares have yet to begin, vampire!” The crowd cheered the priest on and wielded their weapons and torches high in the air.
“Please, my family is the only thing that gives me the feeling of humanity. With out them, without their love, I may as well be a demon.”
“Silence!” Demanded the priest gripping his crucifix.
“Priest, is this how you carry out the word of God? Through the hate you put onto me and the fear you put my children in? You are a fraud. If you truly knew God, you would know he does not want you to hate. If you intend on hurting my family, then it is you that is the demon, not me.”
“I said silence, you beast!” The priest had grown even more furious.
Michael felt that he had been defeated and he surely would die, however, whilst he was protesting to the priest Philomena and the children made their way out to the back and got the hearse and drove up alongside of Michael. “Michael, hurry!” yelled Philomena.
Michael ran swiftly to the hearse and hopped in, just as he did the hearse left as fast as it could. The mob began to chase the Moretti family and began to throw rocks and weapons at the automobile. The children screamed with fear like harmless sheep. Philomena handed the wheel over to Michael and switching positions with him saying to the children with a smile, “Now, now loves. We’ll be alright, now won’t we?” The children remained silent and fearful, “We’ll be alright. We’ll be just fine loves.”
“Mother, can you sing us a song?” asked Raphael.
“Yes, sit with us mother, please?” asked Allophones.
“Alright,” Philomena worked her way to the back seat and sat in-between the two children and wrapped her eyes around them.
“Now just relax and close your eyes,” started Philomena, and with her angelic voice began to softly sing to her boys, “Love, love, love, close your eyes and let everything be. You are close to me and that is all we need. You are safe with me and I with you. We will live forever and our love shall never cease to be.”