Falsely AccusedMature

Once upon a time, in a time much like the 1900s, but with cars and women in pants and magic and such, there was a girl with a very sick brother. I never finished this story, and would love to see what y'all come up with.

Rani heard retching noises from her brother's bedroom. She stopped drying the dishes for a moment, cocking her head to the side so she could hear better, just in case something happened. It stopped about two minutes later, and she heard him collapse back on the bed. She resumed her drying.

"Did you get any on the floor?" She called.

"No, Toma replied softy, trying to speak as loud as he could. "The bucket's almost full though."

"Okay," the girl said as she put the last dish in the cupboard. "I'll be right there." Rani went in to Toma's room, picking up the bucket outside the door. The bucket was empty, but wouldn't be for long. She walked to the bed where her brother lay and replaced the full bucket next to the bed with the empty one. She averted her eyes, trying not to look at the mixture of blood and bile in the bucket. She never got used to the fact that her brother was slowly dying, and that there was nothing she could do about it.

"You feel like you're getting better." Rani said, putting a gentle hand on her brother's forehead. It was as hot as ever, but she hoped that she would be able to lift his spirits a little.

"Liar," Toma said, a small, weak smile appearing on his face. "I feel the same." He coughed, covering his mouth with his hand. "Now get out, before you get it too."

"I can't, remember?" Rani said. "That's what Mama said. I wish she'd say why." She picked up the bucket and gave her brother a kiss on the forehead. " Call me if you need anything."

"Okay." He said, as the door closed. "Love you."

"Love you too." Rani said as she pulled the door shut. She went outside to rinse the bucket. Once outside she stuck the hose in the bucket, the water overflowing after a minute or two. She emptied the bucket. There was a large brown stain on the ground, and this contribution only made it larger.

Suddenly she stood up straight. What was that noise? It sounded like a car, but nobody came up here since Toma got sick. Rani walked cautiously to greet it, her skirt swaying. She spotted it coming up the path, and the car stopped a few feet in front of her. Four men stepped out, and three walked purposefully to the house.

"Hey!" Rani yelled, running after them with a shaking fist. " Where do you think you're going? You can't go in my house without permission! Who do you think you are?"

A hand grabbed her wrist, and she whirled around. She was about to tell him to get his henchmen out of her house, but stopped when she recognized the face of the mayor's son - and her former suitor.

"Adrian?" She gasped. "What are you doing here?"

His face was stony, cold and emotionless. " Getting rid of the vampire problem."

"What vampire problem?" She said angrily, pulling her wrist out of his hand.

"Your brother, of course." Adrian said calmly. Shock was written over Rani's face as he continued. " That's why he coughs up blood, because he's been stealing it from everyone in town."

" That's impossible!" Rani said. "He can barely walk, how could he get all the way to town!"

"Rani?" Toma said as he was taken out of the house, the thugs restraining him in a matter that seemed much too rough for an eleven year old boy. "What's going on?"

"Look at him!" Rani yelled at Adrian. " What makes you think he could possibly hurt anyone?"

" We have to Rani," He said calmly. "I know you cant' see it, but he is. And vampires must be burned."

"No!" She screamed. "No, no, no, no, no!"

"Do you want everyone to die?" Adrian said, his voice growing impatient for the first time. " Didn't you tell me that ten lives were worth more than one? Why are you contradicting yourself?"

"He's my brother, he's the only family I have left!" She retorted, tears coming to her eyes. " Was this why you asked me that? Were you always planning on doing this?"

Adrian didn't reply, just watching his men carry Toma to the car. They were amazingly intent on finishing their work, and for some reason Toma didnt' struggle very much. Was he too weak to do so, or did he not want to burden his sister any longer?

"Yes." Adrian said, walking to the passenger's seat. "I always did." Then he instructed the driver to leave.

Rani stood there for a moment, watching them drive away, then ran in to the house. She wiped her tears, unsure of what to do next. With only some idea of a plan in mind, she went back outside and got her brother's bicycle. It was rusty, and hadn't been used for years. She pushed  off, moving wobbily down the hill.

When Rani finally got to the village, the bonfire had already started. Flames licked around Toma's feet. He howled for help when he wasn't coughing or spitting blood. A crowd surrounded the fire, cheering in a manner that suggested a festival. Rani ran through the crowd and the flames to her brother.

"Run, Rani!" Toma said, almost shouting, but unable to. "You dont' need to die because of me!"

"Mama said we had to protect eachother!" She said over the roar of the flames. Her hands shook as she tried to undo his bonds. "So I am!" The ropes came untied and she pulled him out of the flames and in to the forest. There was shouting behind them, followed by the pounding of feet. Toma coughed, slowing them down because he could barely breathe.

"Please god," Rani thought, " Please let us make it out of here alive."

The End

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