"Come, come, delightful one,
Leave your cares behind, have fun.
With me, you need have no fear,
So, make my dreams, come true, my dear."
Terri Reynolds awakes one night to find a mysterious, handsome guy standing outside her bedroom window. She discovers he has some very strange abilities and soon discovers that he's not human, well not fully anyway.
0:00 read the screen of my glow-in-the-dark alarm clock. Midnight. Exactly. Why had I woken up at so precise a time, and moreover, why had I awoken?
And then, I heard it. A soft, haunting melody coming from the direction of my window, which I’d left half-open this evening because of the stifling warmth of the summer sun.
“Come, come, delightful one,
Leave your cares behind, have fun.
With me, you need have no fear,
So, make my dreams, come true, my dear.”
Here, the song broke off with a soft chuckle. I realised, without quite knowing how I’d got there, that I was standing rooted to the spot, halfway between my bed and the window, waiting for the song to continue. I seemed unable to move, listening as the mysteriously compelling song replayed itself in my head.
Strangely, I didn’t feel any sort of fear. I was oddly calm and at peace with the world. When the singing broke out again, my feet started moving of their own accord: so helplessly drawn to the eerie, yet enchanting, song as I was.
“Come, come, my glorious one,
To the window, for some fun,
May fear leave you, may you find
My presence cause to fast unwind.”
By this moment, I was at the window. The song ended, and a chill escaped the spell I was under to run down my spine. I shivered in the cool night air, so different from the earlier stuffiness. On the other hand, I felt none of the fear the former chill should have given me as I gazed down upon a gorgeous guy.
He looked at least seventeen. He was tall and lean, with medium-brown hair in no particular style. His skin wasn’t tanned, but neither was it pale, and there was a hint of a visible aura around him: a faint golden glow which he seemed to be emanating. His posture was relaxed - he could’ve been leaning against a wall, he looked so comfortable. The last thing I noticed was his mouth. His thin lips were curved into an alluring and captivating smile - the kind that takes your breath away.
I’m sure my heart would’ve doubled its pace had I not felt so calm. It was queer how natural it felt to be standing there, taking in this handsome view.
I suddenly heard a soft musical voice. The boy’s lips weren’t moving, but I heard the words clearly - they must have been in my head.
‘Come down and join me,’ the voice invited, every inch as enchanting as the song had been.
As if in a dream, I drifted out of my room, down the stairs and through the living room to the front door. I barely noticed the cold flagstones beneath my feet as I glided noiselessly over them.
When I reached the door, I turned the key (which my mother left in the keyhole in case a speedy exit was required in a fire) and stepped out into the still, cool night, slowly pulling the door shut behind me, but never taking my eyes off the boy whose eyes followed me.
Barely in control of my body, I walked until I was standing a few feet away from him. He closed the gap between us, and wordlessly scooped me up in his arms. I was vaguely surprised at how I didn’t protest, but it felt like my emotions were being muffled by a heavy blanket, so I took little notice of what seemed like an insignificant feeling.
I noticed we were headed towards the back of the cottage and this made me feel secure, as if I’d been worried that this queer stranger was kidnapping me.
I closed my eyes and leaned back against the boy’s right shoulder, relaxed by the gentle motion and the soft, rhythmic crunches on the gravel.
‘Don’t fall asleep.’ His command wasn’t fierce and it didn’t even sound like a command, but I suppose that’s what it must have been. He seemed way too sure that I would do what he wanted for it to have been a mere request.
I briefly wondered why I wasn’t allowed to sleep before returning to dwell upon the sensation of movement and the tranquil silence of the night. I was altogether in a more ‘feeling’ mood than a ‘thinking’ one.
Surprisingly, the boy answered as if he’d heard my unspoken question.
I don’t want you to miss any of tonight. Tonight will be beautiful, albeit dreamlike for you.
I found myself longing for the boy’s voice to continue in my mind because, although it was calming and soft, it was thrilling. Listening to it was like looking at something truly beautiful and awe-inspiring. My heart fluttered.
We stopped. He planted me down on a soft, smooth surface that felt like a cushion. I opened my eyes and found myself on the garden swing in the corner of the garden. The boy sat down next to me and looked intently at me.
I realised that I hadn’t looked at his eyes before. Now, I felt like I was falling into their deep blue depths, melting in their warmth, yet flooded by the sadness conveyed by their wistful longing. I was so absorbed in him that I hardly noticed I’d been staring.
I was gently jolted out of my reverie when he asked me a question.
‘What’s your name?’ It vaguely occurred to me that it was strange that someone would have done something like this without even knowing the name of the person they were doing it to.
I was still looking in his eyes, unable to draw away from them. Their depths seemed to dissolve all my thoughts as I unthinkingly answered “Terri.”
That would have shocked me, had I been in more control of myself: you should never tell a stranger your name. The odd thing was, though, I felt as if I’d known him all my life. I felt like my life had been filled with experiences of him: his musical voice, his mesmerising eyes; though, in the back of my mind, a little voice was reminding me, 'You don’t even know his name yet.'
'Christopher,' came the response in my head. Another reply to an unspoken question.
There was a pause before the next question he asked me.
How old are you?
“17,” I replied, though I found myself wondering what the point in answering out loud was, when he could probably hear my thoughts.
I don’t mind. It’s easier if you answer out loud, though. It means I don’t have to sift through your thoughts to find the answer to my question. On the other hand, I’d learn more about you if I listened to your thoughts.
While he was ‘talking’, a new thought came to my mind. Barely aware my question had nothing to do with what he’d just been talking about, I asked, “What am I doing?”
He chuckled quietly and musically. Sitting here, talking to me.
If I’d been more able to control my actions and emotions, I probably would have glared at his teasing joke. Instead, I rephrased my question.
“Why aren’t I trying to get away from you? Why am I letting you talk to me? Why am I being so stupid?”
The blanket over my emotions, though still there, felt a little lighter and I was starting to think more clearly. Christopher looked away.
‘Well,’ he hesitated, perhaps wondering how to answer. ‘You aren’t trying to get away because I told you to join me and didn’t mention anything about leaving, and you’re letting me talk to you because your thoughts are a little clouded (and actually, I don’t think you mind).’ Here, he winked mischievously, looking at me again, before looking down. ‘And you aren’t really being stupid; I’m just not letting you think clearly.’
“Why does it depend on you?”
‘Ah. Um, well,’ he hesitated again. ‘You’re sort of in a light trance...’
“A what?” I couldn’t really sound angry - my emotions were still suppressed - so the question came out weakly.
A trance. A light one. A trance is sort of like sleep, but it’s not...
“I know what a trance is! What am I doing in one?”Again, the words came out as if I were too tired to put any emotion into them.
‘My serenade may have been... a little... hypnotic.’ He sounded as if he were squirming inside.
Good, I thought, but then, I was confused.
“A hypnotic serenade? Is that even possible?”
‘You can’t really doubt that it is.’ His hand made a sweeping gesture to show that I was truly sitting here, having this conversation.
His once happy expression was pained. He looked as if he hadn’t planned on the conversation going in this direction.
Vampires are incredibly hypnotic. In fact, I could probably put you in a full trance with one well directed stare.
“What?! Did you just say ‘vampire’?”
‘Yes.’ He sounded unhappy, as if his plans for tonight had gone down the drain.
“You’re a vampire?!” The incredulity was clear in my voice. I realised I must be waking up. But he didn’t answer. Instead, a light seemed to have gone on in his eyes - the flash of inspiration was like a miniature camera flash, a yellow streak in a blue expanse.
He suddenly stared at me intently, gazing deep into my eyes. The depths seemed to enfold me, like layers of blankets. I suddenly realised what he was doing, but, by then, it was too late for me to look away.
My thoughts dissolved and the world turned black.