I had blocked out all sounds of whatever else may be happening - it was as if me and the bloodwolf girl existed in a separate silent bubble. But suddenly a shriek ripped at the air, a horrifying wrenching sound, and then a large dark shape dropped down in front of me and straightened. Silver flashed and the vampire warrior charged at his new opponent. I heard the screech of metal scraping her claws and winced. The sound seemed to runs straight through me. A second later and the line of bright silver swept high and claimed the girl’s hissing, spitting head. In her last moment she had gotten underneath his high death strike and raked his chest. As he turned towards me from the decapitated corpse, I saw the tears in his black shirt, but there was no blood. The Kevlar vest showed through. Maybe I needed one of those if I was going to be attacked every night.

I didn’t want to be the stupid one and ask if he was all right. I just nodded silently in acknowledgement of what he had done for me. He didn’t put his sword back into the scabbard strapped over his back. He held it loosely in one hand, looking off into the woods over my right shoulder, as if he was waiting.

I saw the shadow detach itself from the undergrowth, saw it’s red eyes glow suddenly, and it’s mouth open in a sadistic triumphant grin, ready to tear into William’s shoulder. But before I could even cry out, he had expertly manoeuvred the blade into a position where the Bloodwolf was going to hit it. Mid-leap, there was nothing the creature could do, though his expression turned into an angry snarl. Then it hit the perfectly positioned blade and it sheared through him like he was nothing but butter. I closed my eyes at the last minute but I still heard the sickening snapping of bones and splattering of blood and the thud of the body halves falling separately to the ground.

“Shouldn’t we move them?” I said when I had deemed it safe enough to open my eyes again. “If anyone heard the noise there might be people looking around…”

“No, we don’t have to move them yet,” he said, watching the lifeless hacked up bodies. I didn’t know what he was looking for, but suddenly I realised that the bodies were - decomposing? Rapidly their hands and faces sifted away as if they had melted into dust or sand and were blown away on the wind. William flicked the clothes up on the tip of his sword and bundled them together under his arm. He was carrying the clothes of dead people. I shuddered and followed him as he leaped back over the fence. I had to get a foot up and push myself up then jump down the other side.

When my feet hit the soft grass, it was wet with dew, and William was stood with his back to me.

“I’ve found your friends,” he said, indicating the side of the house with his sword. Two figures were just rounding the corner of the front of the house and coming down the driveway. One was taller than the other, and when they walked into the light of the garden lamps I could see their worried faces in more detail.

Before they could let the questions spill out of their mouths, they looked around and saw the blood on William’s sword, still pointing in their direction. He had lowered it when they came into the light to show he meant them no harm and knew who they were.

“Sorry about that. We tried to lure them away, but only half of them followed us. We despatched them by the canal.”

The canal was a mile down the road out of Slake. That must have been some fast running and fighting. Then again, the same was for William.

I remembered the ninja-like intruder who had gone into the house through the window as we traipsed in through the front door after I retrieved a spare key inside the hollow gnome ornament in the garden. The gnome’s face looked sinister as if it was leering, and I wasn’t slow to put it back down.

The End

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