a modern tale of vampires, inspired by the novels of Russian author Sergei Lukyanenko.
Most stories start in the middle, craftily created to fill in the back story as it progresses, all before coming to an end, a climax. This one, though, my story, is different. I'm at the end already, you see, an old creature, dying in his bed. Dying in the comfort that was long forbidden to me.
The room is dark around me, not a light to break the gloom, no illumination seeping through the panes of glass that mark the boundaries of this indoor space. Even the moon hides tonight, her fair face turned away from my passing.
Fitting, I smile weakly, a faint echo of the beast within.
A noise echoes through my heavy door, a weary creak of ancient floorboards, though younger still than I. I know what caused the creak, and the ones that soon followed; I know what they herald. But even as the muffled foot falls grow closer, clearer, I betray no sign of anxiety.
That which I have awaited is finally come.
The hinges of the door mimic the groans of the floor as they carry their burden, swinging, outwards. In the darkness my aged eyes hadn't even noticed the slow twist of the brass knob, nor my ears the delicate click as the mechanism was withdrawn.
The shadow stepped in quietly, as shadows are wont to do. The figure now in my room was, in fact, a shadow, though not of the literal sort. He was a shadow of me, an image of my past, and I an frail image of his future.
"My son," I manage feebly, a bare rasp in my throat.
"Father," the shadow intones, concerned.
"I am glad you have arrived," I whisper. "I can finally pass to you what is yours, then soon pass myself."
Stepping nearer, the shadow is revealed in features, textures. Dark blue eyes stare deep into mine. His, a stormy sea, uncertain. Mine, a calm pool, casting reflections. His face, too, mirrors my form, the strength in his features, the cut of his jaw. He draws ever near me, arms outstretched in longing.
I turn away to face the ceiling, an insect trapped on its back.
"You cannot leave us yes," my son implores. "We still have need of you. I still have need of you."
"Silence," my voice bears some command yet. "You shall take what I give freely, for God knows you have not earned it."
"But father..." his voice trails off as I do, my consciousness seeping away with a whisper, exhaled.
Just as I must end, so must all things. But just as all thing end, so, too, must all things begin.
His klaxon laments my passing.