Machiavellian Musings

Music to write to…

‘Shouting Nonsense’ by Graylen Brown.

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Excerpt from “Nyala”

She tossed and turned, being chased through dark alleys, shadows sweeping down to stop her progress.  A part of her knew this was a dream, nothing here could really hurt her; she could wake up whenever she wanted to-watch…then instead of waking up sweating in her bed, she ran into a dead end.  Garbage was strewn around the dim alley.  The moonlight struggled vainly through the scum of clouds, obscuring its ray.  She turned in a circle, realizing there was no escape…and there were things skittering around in the dark; bags of garbage slithered ominously, somehow moving out of the corner of her eye.  The feeling of panic intensified; desperation threatened to choke the breath from her very lungs.  Her only chance for survival was to – RUN!  She whirled around to head out the alley and the wind blew, it was so strong, blowing her back a couple of steps.  The debris in the ally flew into her face temporarily blinding her.  She threw her hands up to protect her eyes straining to see – and now the footsteps echoed around her, she stepped back but couldn’t tell which direction they were coming from.  Garbage flew faster rustlings grew louder and suddenly rats poured from the shadows of her prison, swarming towards her.  She screamed and kicked out but they surrounded her chittering, anticipating her flesh and blood in their maw.  They encircled her the brave ones nipping bit her pant legs and shoelaces.  Suddenly the wind stopped, the garbage settled upon the ground once more, resting on the now legion of rodents frozen from movement.  Looking up, she remembered the footsteps and saw the most beautiful pair of orbs ever created.  She saw power, immense power in them.  They seemed to swarm about her like the rats had done.  Her whole life became centered in those pupils, she saw herself in them, falling, hands drowning, up in supplication ,,,

then she woke up panting … and aroused. 

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They See You…

“It is time. This is the best opportunity we’ve had in centuries! We must act now.” The councilman struck his open palm with his fist forcefully to make his point. Most of the other people sitting around the oval cherry wood table winced momentarily but quickly smoothed their features out. TC, The Councilman didn’t like displays of weakness. That was part of the reason he hated the sheep so much.

          TA, the TC’s assistant nodded his head vigorously after recovering from his wince.  His job was to soak in every word and deed of the TC, regardless of its validity.

          “Yes, you are right, Councilman.  Conditions could not be better there have been no new sightings—no legitimate sightings in the last 30 years. They have forgotten all about us. Their warriors are spread thin fighting each other over in the land of sand. There weapons are nonexistent. If we strike quickly, they will not be able to muster a defense worthy of our ferocity. They— “

TC held his hand up to stop TA’s litany.

          “Look in the book. Who are the first targets?”

TA began flipping frantically through the pages of the great book written thousands of years ago.

          “Well, uh, let’s see…let me get to the pertinent page…”

TC’s face screwed up in anger. His lips drew back against his gums to show his elongated incisors. His eyes shrank to slits and his nose developed wrinkles noses generally do not have.

          “This is information you should have memorized at birth TA! You should not NEED to look at the book at all!” TA shrunk back from TC’s anger but TC drew his fearsome countenance close to TA.

          “You make me think I should replace you with someone else, more committed to the cause. Someone who knows the book intimately. How well do you know the book, Revere?”

TC turned his burning gaze on the man at the far end of the table. The one called Revere did not flinch under the pressure; he knew the question was mostly a rhetorical one.

          “I have memorized every word, Oh Great Councilman. But you already knew that about me.” Revere’s mocking tone was not lost on the TC. His black eyebrows bunched up like his nose did as a result of the serious frown but he didn’t speak on it.

          “Yes, Revere, I know everything. Just as I know you’re attempt at sarcasm was meant to perturb me.” TC stared steadily at Revere.

          “Ruthless One, you are correct— “

          “What am I correct in, underling?”

          “It is true – you know everything.” At those words, TC’s brows relaxed at Revere’s words. Revere continued.

“It is true, I was trying to needle you – but I was only following your lead.” The eyebrows contorted again as TC asked him.

“How did I lead you Revere?”

          “You led me in all ways, TC. You made me, educated me, trained me. Because of you, I can read our holy book with my eyes closed. But I can also find a being’s weak spot and exploit it. I learned that little trick from the best. You.”

The TC’s face changed to show its true nature in an instant. The whole facial structure elongated in a lupin fashion. The eyes shrank even more to mere slits in his face, losing the epicanthal fold to just show a line of blackness. The cheekbones raised higher and stretched back and the nose lost its wrinkles as it pushed back into his face altogether. TC’s lips fell inward under the pressure of hundreds of needlelike proboscises shooting from his gums.  This was the true face of a vampire as old as the Councilman. A face made for searching out prey and devouring it whole. A visage streamlined for death. Or undeath. The voice that came from that horror of a mouth was deep and gravelly as if it took every ounce of self-control not to commence with murder immediately. 

          “I see you did not learn deference or self-preservation from me, learned one. You ask me to bring you death on wings with such attempts at subordination. Maybe this will be a better teacher.”

TC stood up in one fluid motion. In his full nature, his movements were those of a predator:  sharp and fast. It seemed he only took two steps before appearing in front of Revere.  He opened his nightmare maw wide into his face and hissed. Clear gouts of saliva ran down the teeth as if the enameled sticks were also anticipating chomping down on someone.

          “Who the FUCK do you think you are BOY? Do you think I made you for this?”  Revere could only keep his eyes on TC’s teeth for a second; he had to look down and spoke with his eyes cast towards the floor.

          “No, TC.  My intent was not to anger you.”

          “Your intent means NOTHING!! It is your actions and words that count. You try now to assert some sort of independence, to prove in some way that you are not under my command.  Let me tell you something, boy. You’re under my thumb. You do as I say. You act accordingly. Or you WILL die.” TC hissed the last word into Revere’s face, ruffling the hair that fell over his forehead. His face slightly turned left and right, as if that helped push out the hiss, making it last as long as possible. Revere kept his eyes low while TC breathed in his face. However, he couldn’t resist one more jab.

          “I am sorry Father. I do not wish to die. Were I to die, because I am yours to command, my death throes would weaken you to a point of near incapacitation. As we are linked, I must stay healthy, to keep you healthy. Isn’t that correct?” Revere dared a look upward into his father’s face.

Incredibly, TC smiled widely through his predatory teeth. And then, still smiling, TC ate Revere’s right eye. He simply leaned forward and closed his mouth onto Revere’s face, digging in from the eyebrow to the cheekbone. The movement was so fast that Revere had no idea it was coming and so could not protect himself. The shock of the attack forced his own vamp to the surface. Hi eyes went black and murderous teeth shot out between his lips but he could still do nothing. Chunks of flesh and blood rushed down his face in gushing torrents. Revere’s face stayed attached to TC’s teeth for at least 5 seconds—an eternity to everyone in the room.

Then TC began chewing. Revere began to scream though the sound was muffled between the teeth and blood. TC’s eyes were locked on Revere’s remaining orb. He moved his mouth up and down on Revere’s face, turning the flesh into a bloody mess. He sank deeper each time, creating another set of holes in the skin.

Revere tried to disengage himself from the attack, pushing at TC’s body with his hands and stretching his head as far back as he could to no avail. TC was immovable as stone. He continued to gnaw on Revere’s face. The other members of the council were dead quiet. Some of them showed their vamp too, helpless at the sight of all that blood and gore, even if it was from one of their own. But no one moved to take part in the feasting they saw before them, nor to help their brother. They all liked their eyes very much.

TC placed his hands on either side of Revere’s head in order to steady himself, then opened his mouth impossibly wide. Revere tried to pull away, but TC’s hands held his head in place. Then TC lowered his head and took one more big giant bite. Revere screamed even louder when TC opened wide, as if the teeth hurt even more coming out, then gave a horrible gurgle when TC went back in. TC gripped Revere’s head tight then in one quick motion, ripped away from Revere’s face. He took the eye with him this time, leaving an empty tattered eye socket; a black gaping hole that still dribbled ichor. Revere immediately clasped his hands over his ruined face, keening in a high whistle. Now that the assault was essentially over, his vamp fell back and his teeth receded. His left eye returned to its former green, but it was filled with shock and tears rather than arrogance and amusement.

TC stepped back, chewing slowly. His teeth stayed long, covered with the detritus from Revere’s face. The skin below his eyes was painted with red-black blood and gobbets of flesh.

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