I push the door open carefully, listening to the eerie creak that doesn't belong in a high rise flat in the middle of a run-down town. The light in the hallway flickers and if I didn't know what this was all real, I'd say it was something out of a Hammer Horror. This apartment never has anyone in it. It's been empty as long as I can remember, and y'know, twenty six years is a long time for an apartment to be empty. Well, there might have been someone here before I got old enough to sneak out at night to smoke weed with my mates in a drug den.
My thoughts are rambling, I know, because I'm terrified of what I'm going to find. Terrified and excited. My girlfriend, Angelina, was kidnapped a few days ago. I didn't need a ransom note to know who or why. Jesse, trying to get me to leave him alone. Jesse - vampire, and so naturally, on my wanted list. Thing is, once they get what they want, how can you stop them from killing their hostage anyways?
I step into the apartment and feel along the wall where I know the light switch should be, but when I flick the switch, nothing happens.
"Alex?" the police woman next to me says in a firm voice that tells me she thinks I'm ignoring her on purpose. I'm not. She asked me to remember. So I am. I don't want to. I want that morphine. Why won't they let me have that morphine? "Please answer me. This information is vital," she tells me. Pfft. Fuck off. My life is in tatters and all you care about is filling the forms.
My hand strayed to the hunting knife strapped to my left arm. Nine inches in total, four and a half inches of lethally sharpened stainless steel. One side is serrated and the other flat, the edge smoother and sharper than a razor blade. The rubber grip is shaped to fit my hand and there's no messing around with this knife. I've lost count of how many times it's saved my life. Silently, I unsheathe it, ready to use it at the slightest twitch from Jesse.
It should be just Jesse here. Well, just him and Angelina. A floorboard creaks, and I twist, straining my eyes in the dim light from the hallways. I can't see a fucking thing. Useless wiring. Though I have my suspicions that it's deliberate, the light not working. Given that Vampire's don't like the light all that much.
"Alex!" the woman struggles to keep her patience. My eyes are blank. I blink.
"A... Alex?" a shaky voice says. "Alex, is that you?" There's a thump and the woman cries out as she lands face down on the floor.
"Angelina," I half whispered, almost afraid to speak louder, almost as if doing that would make Jesse lose it and kill her.
"Alex!" the policewoman says firmly, her tone irritable and annoyingly close. Go away.
In the light from the hall, I can see that her clothes have been ripped and she shines dully with blood. Her smooth dark flesh is slick with it, I can see even from here. I move forward, hesitantly. As I crouch beside Angelina, the door slams shut and the light is cut off. But I came prepared, my usual gear for a hunt strapped to my body. Including a small torch. Which I pull out, my hands sweating and shaking, the fear that I don't want to show quaking through my whole body.
I turn the little torch on, the thin shaft between my fingers like a pencil as I reach out and touch Angelina. She groans softly and I realise my touch, as gentle as it was, hurt her. What did they do to her?
"C'mon," I mutter, helping her up as carefully as I can. She mumbles something about it hurting, but I don't really hear. I'm listening for Jesse. The door is closed; he clearly isn't done with me just yet. This can't be good.
A nurse bends over me, gazing into my eyes as I remember. She looks a bit concerned, and turns to someone else, her words lost by my recalled rage as I felt the blood on Angelina's skin.
I carefully take in the colour of Angelina's skin, as dark and rich as treated mahogany, shining brightly in the thin beam of light from the torch. Except the shine is blood, not polish, and the deep colour is her skin, not some wood. She's cold. I hug her close to me and kiss her cheek gently, whispering to her that it would be okay, that I'd get her out. I thought maybe if I whispered, she wouldn't hear the terror in my voice.
I can't lose her.
She just nods and tells me she knows I'll get us out of here.
But I don't. I can't.
Jesse won't let me.