Achille’s Heel 2. [story part 23]
March 2, 2012 § 3 Comments
Now, you might think that, for the way I talk about her, I’m sure slow in taking the right choice.
But you have to understand, it’s not that easy. It’s not easy deciding to murder the person you love. The only one.
Because Regina was not just any other girl. Her death would not just affect me and her, it would affect a million other vampires, and at least that many humans also. And if, by any chance, all the history stories I’ve heard among them, are actually true, then I don’t even want to think how it would affect history. Or how it did these past five hundred years.
The reason I didn’t decide in killing her just yet was, well, because you see, I wasn’t sure if the way she affected the world was good, or bad.
She was 100% percent good, and in the same time, 100% evil. How is that even possible?
I’ve been raised, and taught, that things are either bad or good. Sometimes in-between. But this situation right here, was the biggest dilemma of my life, and I couldn’t even comprehend how is it possible. Regina wasn’t good, or bad, or in-between. She was both as good as she was evil. How?
And then I thought – this is impossible to reason. For once in my life, for the first time, I was faced with a decision which had to be taken with my heart.
And so it was.
Fuck the world, fuck all of you.
And like I said, decisions like these are not made in your brain, you don’t know where they come from or what line of thought you followed. They just happen, and you just act.
I pulled the knife from her heart as easy as it went in, but this time slowly. As slow as I could. I didn’t know what to expect, but I stepped back, went in a corner, left the knife on the floor, and waited.
It didn’t take long, I didn’t even have time to put my thoughts in order.
She woke as violently as she went down, it was as if her anger was frozen in time for a bit.
She instantly saw me, and snarled at me, the coughed violently. I was in the corner, scared out of my mind, looking at her face.
“Please don’t kill me.” – Lamest thing I could find, but it was the most sincere request I had ever made.
She smiled, turned a bit around and started coughing again. She was clearly weakened.
I took the chance, encouraged by her smile, to approach her.
As soon as I was in range, she pulled me on the bed, turned around and in a second was above me, holding my neck tight with her left hand and with her right hand on my heart.
She was listening and feeling my heart.
I was frozen. I was expecting her to grab my heart in her hand and just literally squeeze the life out of me.
“The most beautiful thing in the world don’t you think…?” She asked.
“The sound of a heartbeat…” She added.
I said nothing.
“AND YOU TOOK IT AWAY FROM ME!” She then shrieked.
“You took mine a long time ago…” I was being romantic, maybe it would work to water her anger down. It did.
“Suppose I should be happy now… you made your decision.” She said.
I didn’t understand at the time, but later on it made sense. You see, she always knew that I was split in opinion about her. She always knew that I would either decide to kill her at one point, if given the chance, or to protect her with my life. And she needed me to make my decision. This was me making my decision. I had decided to protect her life no matter what.
It was much like having a relative trying to commit suicide. He always says he will, and you try to hide the knife. But can you really keep a knife away from him all his life? No. So then what do you do? You give him a knife, leave him alone, and leave. When you return, if he’s dead, you failed, but if he’s alive, maybe a bit cut but alive, then you succeeded. You helped him make that decision. The decision to live. Because a man who really wants to end his life, will not cut himself just a bit, to attract attention. No, he will cut himself beyond any repair.
And I understood Regina, she gave me the chance, the knife and I took my decision.
But all this time, I was being fooled.
You see, the Codex Strigis does say that a human has the last say in the decision of murdering another, but in case of Regina, the treaty of Vienna that she herself made with the elders, clearly states that “you will all unite for a common goal and cause only if it endangers the queen or the kinship.” And what I done, checked both boxes.
It was, a very, very sneaky trick of her, making sure she was safe from human hands and protected from the Codex. But this is something that I’ve learned only recently, at the time I was very convinced that my decision would have been respected.
“Viktoria?” She asked.
“I think she’s alive.” I replied back.
“Should I thank you also for stopping me taking the life of my beloved?” She asked again.
I didn’t answer.
“You… a human boy. Not even of age… You are my Achille’s heel.” She continued.
“Not my heart, not my other weaknesses, no. You are the true weak point of me.”
And she was right. I changed her, and she changed me, in ways you rarely see these days. She gave me access to her most intimate thoughts and desires, and I gave her back something she always longed for: innocent smiles and desires, of a human child, a child that she once was. She always longed for bits and pieces of humanity, of pure human feelings, things that could keep her in balance.
She was still above me and without a warning, interrupting me while I was speaking, she leaned over me and struck. She dug deep inside my chest, with her fangs, she struck. Above my left nipple and to the right, above my heart. She bit so hard I swear I heard something cracking.
The pain was similar to the bite in the church months before. She was doing it on purpose. It hurt so bad I screamed my lungs out. It cut my breathing. It stabbed my heart like a thousand knives. This was revenge.
Nobody entered the room but I was sure the elders knew she’s with us again, and she was taking what was hers. Revenge.
Their face was pretty priceless when they saw me standing tall along her side when we left the room.
“Viktoria?” She said.
“Alive, barely.” Karl replied and led us down stairs.
Viktoria was in the same place we had left her, not bleeding anymore, missing an arm, conscious and in excruciating pain.
Regina approached her and spoke to her in Russian.
I don’t know what she said but she hugged her afterwards and then asked her in English, for us all to understand.
“Why did you do it my love? Why did you break my rules?”
“Envy my queen…” She barely replied.
“You have everyone submitting to your every wish…”
“And I’ve been lonely for centuries.”
“I need a pack because I can’t control the wolf within me no longer.”
Both me and Regina understood this, but also understood that Viktoria would be that much more dangerous with a pack of her own.
“Then you shall have it, but not like that. You will gain it through respect and devotion, not fear and strength.” And she was right again, because that was exactly the way Regina had her followers. Submitting out of respect, devotion and admiration. A pack that fears you is a pack that will attack you sooner or later.
“But right now, you need to recover.” I was keen on seeing that happen, and learned that Viktoria would indeed recover, but it would take months if not years. And until then, she needed to stay inside, protected, and powered down totally, mustering all her strength into her healing ability.
I had the perfect person in mind to do that. I knew it wasn’t fair, but I wanted a stronger connection between me, Viktoria and Blanche. So I called Blanche, told her all that happened, asked her to be Viktoria’s guardian for as long as she needs, and she accepted.
Blanche came in the days that followed, took Viktoria and went unseen. For months, Blanche was to do everything for her, she was to get Viktoria all the nutrition she needed to recover, every day.
I felt that this whole visit was a disaster. We had learned nothing, Moscow didn’t help and we were no closer to finding Regina’s maker.
But that was false.
The next day we left the mansion just as happy as we went in, but now with the elders having more respect and fear of me. I was a mere human, but Regina had shown them that I meant more than that. And I would have loved to tell them why, and how exactly I was connected with her, but that was not their business to know.
We had to find her maker. We had to find the black eyed children. We had to know what they want. We had to know what is their purpose. We had to know why was I given the necklace. We had to know so much, and Regina knew that only answering those questions, for me, would get me on her side, would get me to willingly accept – eternity with her.
I was not about to accept such thing, when we both knew, that Regina herself was the subject of such a deal, and now it was my turn. And she knew it also, she knew something was amiss. This was not normal, this was something ancient, this was something planned.
Aware of the tales of the old town of Sighisoara, she knew better than anyone else, that any ancient creature, that spans its plans over millenia, is to be feared of and watched against. The black eyed children had a plan, and we both feared in fulfilling their purpose, to an end that might not be to our liking.
The fact was, that Regina was drawn to me, just as her maker was drawn to her. And we both knew, that the necklace did that. My blood tasted different for her, it was a narcotic, and we both feared, that she once was a narcotic for someone else.
We both wore the necklace that saved our lives, we both wore it as a gift from the black eyed children, we both were helped but kept captive by the necklace. Only one thing could set us free – renouncing our humanity.
We didn’t understand how it worked, although we tried.
Regina was not one to be attracted or interested in magic, however we searched – we searched any explanation possible – and we did find it, but that only raised more questions.
What we knew about it up to that point was little. Physical characteristics told us that the platinum pendant itself was man-made, but the Jade inside is was a rock of Earth. Old as time itself.
We had also learned that the circle around the necklace represented the ouroboros, like a reader also noted. Yes, the ouroboros is an ancient symbol representing a dragon eating its own tail. It symbolizes ” the perpetual cyclic renewal of life and infinity, the concept of eternity and the eternal return, and represents the cycle of life, death and rebirth, leading to immortality, as in the phoenix.”
But the ouroboros can also represent “the idea of primordial unity related to something existing in or persisting before any beginning with such force or qualities it cannot be extinguished.”
All that is taken from Wikipedia of course. We had been told, the same things, along the same lines, from an older book which was given to Regina by an elder when she noticed him looking at the necklace. He recalled reading about the symbol in an old book of his, and also noted that it is strikingly familiar with the seal of Vlad Tepes, the seal of The Dragon Order.
I strongly advise you in reading more about the ouroboros online before stepping into judging my story.
What we didn’t know at the time would shake both of our strong beliefs against all that is supernatural.
We learned that it represented something else: energy.
We learned that the Jade did more than just look beautiful. It was more than a simple stone.
Since ancient times it has been known that certain stones and diamonds can resonate at certain frequencies, which occur naturally, if attuned properly and shaped accordingly. But that is for a later time of the story.
For now I’ll limit it to what we knew at the time.
We needed to find the maker and solve this mystery once and for all. It was now a quest not just for me, but for Regina herself in finding the story of how she came to be.
So we left the mansion the next day. The same as we arrived, together.
“I think it’s about time to tell me your plans.” I said.
“I would, if I had any. Right now I’m just closing leads one by one, until we find one that won’t close.” She replied.
“So we’re blind here. We’re just walking from door to door asking questions?” I asked.
“No, not really.”
And then we arrived at the airport.
“So where to now?” I said.
“We’re going to Sweden, to desecrate a tomb. Does that sound exciting enough for you little one?” I didn’t like her “little one” note, but it did sound exciting otherwise.
“Lars will receive us properly do not worry.” She added, when she saw my confusion. That didn’t calm me down, I didn’t exactly appreciate being around anyone else except her. They didn’t understand my relation with her and it just made things awkward, complicated and violent at times.
And there I was, side by side with a five hundred year old girl, riding a plane towards unknown lands, chasing stories and myths, in a time when others my age were falling love with Justin Bieber and Miley Cyrus, I was falling in love with the most shining star I knew.
We were two normal people, going in vacation in a normal way, towards a noble goal. Or so we thought.
The plane ticket once again read:
Le Mans (LME) France – Arlanda (ARN) Stockholm.
And as the plane took off and started shaking once again, I touched my necklace and looked at Regina.
She held my hand and smiled.
She was alive.
“Did you know that I could make this plane crash and walk away freely after?” She said.
I froze. What? I really hoped she was joking.
She was. Still playing.
As she saw my face she started laughing and then kissed me.
“You don’t know what you’re missing out on…” She whispered slowly in my ear as the plane smoothed out, those five seconds after the shaking of the take-off stops, those seconds when you feel you’re in the air.
I remember her exactly saying that, those were her exact, exact words. Because she was wrong. For once, she was wrong. I did know what I was missing out on, and I didn’t care.
I didn’t care for an endless existence, dictated by someone else. Not by her, not by her maker, but by the ones who started this whole reaction. The black eyed children – whether they were myth or real, I didn’t knew. I didn’t and I don’t believe in such non-sense. I refuse to, even when they are in front of my eyes.
The flight was short, a mere three hours, and by nightfall we were in the airport and sure enough Lars was waiting for us. How did he get here so fast, before us?
We took a separate car and for the first time I saw Regina driving.
I’m sure my face expressed a lot of things because Regina seemed amused by it.
“What? You didn’t think an old lady can drive?” Still playing, still joking. It blew my mind every time how such a creature could still have that joy and life coursing through her veins. After all the wars and cruelty she’s seen, and was a part of, she still had that innocent, twenty year old of age humanity in her. I was starting to think that it will never change, no matter what.
“I didn’t think nothing of it… but it is funny to see you do it.” I replied.
“You should see me mastering my horse then.” She said.
Now that would be a pretty picture I imagined. A picture that would be shown to be sooner than expected…
…as the phoenix was reborn, it wanted nothing else but fly away. [story part 19]
February 26, 2012 § 2 Comments
Before going into the post I just want to make a quick point here:
I had written in an earlier post about how Regina told me that there are hundreds of blood types, and I received about two e-mails telling me that’s bullshit – how could she know more than the whole human scientific world. and that was many years ago, but here is a piece of news written one day after my post, just in time.
Scientists discover two new blood-types. Here is the article in ScienceDaily.
Now on with the story.
And the day came when the risk to remain tight in a bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom.
– Andis Nin.
That day came for me sooner than expected.
That very night, was it.
That night had been a nightmare, and I truly believed that very night, my heart stopped, maybe just for a second. That counts as dead for me.
But I didn’t die. I prefer not to call it “saved” but “reborn”. Not physically, but mentally.
I don’t know what and how to tell you, but something clicked inside me that night. Inside my mind, inside my soul.
I had been shaken so hard, from my very core within, that it changed me entirely. It changed the way I saw the world, it changed the way I thought about the world.
The next day I woke up after sundown, thinking for a second that it’s the same night.
I had flashes of light in my eyes, during the night before, of street light poles flashing in my face, one after another, after another, and I realized I was in the back of a car seeing them as we drove past.
I remember yet even more screams and I remember Regina screaming in Russian at a guy that was driving.
Then I remember passing in and out of conscience, it was a blur but some things are pretty clear.
Like when Regina woke me up and started speaking in Latin. I knew exactly what words she was muttering. The exact same words that I need to accept, like some kind of spoken contract, before being turned.
I said no. I said it even before she was finished with it. She didn’t stop, kept going, and at the end asked me:
“Do you accept?”
“No…” I muttered.
I remember thinking that was rather ironic. The fact that her face at my answer could have easily meant she would kill me right there and then, if it wasn’t the situation I was in. The irony being she was trying to save me, but my answer prompted her to end me.
“If you don’t figure out what your place in the world is, you will soon not have a place in the world at all.” Regina said. And of course, that meant I would die that night if I didn’t accept.
I remember telling myself sooner that year, that I had stopped fighting with my inner demons, that I was on their side now. But it was all lies. I wasn’t prepared to make this choice under this pressure. Even faced with this, death at my doorstep, I was more stubborn than ever.
I would have said yes, maybe, in any other circumstance but this.
“No…” I muttered again. And before letting her explode, I added:
“What is it?”
“What is what?!” She replied quickly, angry at me nonetheless.
I turned my head from one side to the other trying to muster more strength.
I was on a table, in some sort of bar, and I could still hear music somewhere behind me. Dear god I hoped nobody was dancing behind me, while I prepared to meet death.
“What is it that keeps you going, as a vampire…?” I finally explained. What I meant was actually what was the fuel that pumped in her veins, metaphorically, that kept her living, smiling, interested in the world, lively and happy. The very reason to live, the fabric of life itself. That magic thing which gets you through life, no matter how hard it sometimes is. The mojo. The elixir of happiness. Call it however you want, I’m sure there are thousands of way of putting it. But she put it… rather… perfect. On the spot. Like always.
“The beauty of being a vampire?” She replied as a rhetorical question, and then, answering herself, she continued:
“The beauty of being a vampire? The most important thing for me?
It is not eternal life,
it is not power,
it is not invulnerability to any sickness.
it is something much simpler, but that more important.
it is the fact that we get to choose who we’re going to be, everyday.”
How do I remember this? I would remember it at any given hour of the night, like a prayer if you wish. Because it was the perfect answer, Regina, of course, rarely offered any other kind.
It was also the answer that nearly crossed that bridge I was talking about in the first posts about. The bridge that only goes one way, towards eternal life… and others.
I pondered on that for as much as I could, but alas, it came again:
“You will die soon.” And I believed her. I was terrified, but I didn’t want to accept what was happening.
Which were the five stages of death again? Denial, anger, bargaining, depression, acceptance. I was now in denial, but I didn’t really have time to go through all of them, so I decided, unconsciously, to skip the three and just get it done with. Go straight to acceptance, like a magic dice that tells you to skip three spots at a board game.
I tried looking at myself and noticed my arms were moving and then in a flash I remember how my shoulders were just dislocated, not broken, and she put them back by pushing me really hard against the table until they popped, clicked and creaked. Excruciating pain, so intense I would have rather had my arms broken instead, maybe that would be less painful.
The bites were also almost gone, smeared with blood, but almost gone. Regina closed whatever she could to stop me from losing blood so fast.
But my spleen was… well, it was ripped in half and that wouldn’t heal. There was only so much she could do.
I didn’t understand at the time who exactly set these limits, but apparently the blood flow was just, well, too high.
“Hospital…” I finally said after seeing myself in yet another pool of blood I had made. At least I wasn’t puking anymore, and I was well on my way towards acceptance. I was on the brink of giving up. My heart was already skipping every two or three beats, like an old engine trying really hard not to stall.
“They can’t do anything. Too late for that!” Regina said and then added “We could just pray, maybe that would be more fruitful.” That was sarcasm coming out of her mouth. She had it, lots of it actually.
She was against religion, but also careful about the approach towards science. Science gives us the power, but doesn’t tell us how to use that power she once said. I think she was rather referring to nukes back then, not hospitals.
She looked at me with a last inquiring look, as in asking me with both meanings of the word “asking”, for a final time, to accept.
I said, once again, “No…”.
And then, between my last breathes I would ever take, which were becoming farther and farther apart from one another, eyes closed in between, I saw Regina perform a miracle.
Something, that I later learned, she had never tried before. She risked her own more than five hundred years of existence, to save a stubborn child. To save my ass. I would have died happy even if what she did that night wouldn’t have worked.
How much more kindness and sacrifice would you want from a being that the world considers a monster? This alone, gave her forgiveness from me, god, and whoever else might be listening in, for all that she did over the centuries, that night and for what she did to Blanche that night when I told her I could forgive her, depending on whether she could redeem herself. She did redeem herself, for those and more to come.
She literally slashed her wrist almost to the bone with her mouth and made with her knife on my wound a kind of cross but not really, she crested the wound actually, and then she stuck her hand inside me. I literally felt her hand go under my ribs, grabbing something. I felt my own heart trying to make room for whatever that was. I was literally touched on the heart as she passed by. Physically. That DOES NOT happen in science fiction movies, that doesn’t happen in books, that didn’t happen not even in the mother of all miracle books, the fucking bible. She stood like that for what seemed hours, but was merely minutes, and when that didn’t seem to be working, she ripped her throat out on a side, made Nikita hold my wound open and poured herself inside me. I can’t describe it better, I could see a river of her blood dripping inside me, straight inside the wound which by now was the size of a fist. This is what I called a blood transfusion.
But wait – this would turn me!
“Regina, this will turn me! NO!” She looked at me and just slapped me. Soon after that, I fainted or fell asleep, one or the other.
The next morning (after sundown, so night) I woke up in the hotel, in the bed, full of blood but alive. I tried getting up which proved rather an adventure. My hands, shoulders and bites were all good and healed, although I had a slight ache in both my shoulders.
But my left side… on my abdomen, just above the first two ribs on the bottom. Well that was another story. I was healed alright, but the scar was flaming hot, red, still pulsing and looking about to burst. It was still healing under my very own eyes. It was beautiful. It still is. I have a kind of weird… cross on my abdomen. Ironic. Wasn’t sure what was going on inside though, but it felt ok-ish.
I don’t know how and what she did exactly, but she pulled it off. Hell, I didn’t even knew until years later, that my spleen was intact. I was pretty sure she took it out that night.
Regina was nowhere to be seen.
Then I remembered what she had done.
Shit – I turned. I don’t feel different. What’s happening?
I opened the windows trying to look at the sun see if I burn, then I remembered again. Man, those movies were powerful. I still expected vampires to catch fire in sunlight, even though I was now with one almost everyday, and she didn’t.
Still, fangs. Check, nothing. Of course not.
Mirror, I went to take a look at myself, I was pale as a sheet of paper, I was dizzy, nausea and still shivering cold.
I was either a vampire or so anemic that I shouldn’t even be able to open my eyes, not even mentioning getting up.
I instantly cut myself with a scissor, that desperate I was, and stuck my finger in my mouth.
Still human. But how?
I then thought again about Regina. Where was she. Oh god, I remembered how she drained herself completely.
I didn’t knew what to do. Where to… go?
I went in the bathroom to try to clean myself up and leave the hotel for Nikita, although I had no clue where that was.
When I entered the bathroom, there she was.
Regina, in the bathtub, three inches of blood on the bathtub bottom. Enough for a human being to function with.
She looked at me, tried to smile and then started puking again. Blood.
She was puking blood, and she looked horrible. She could barely hold her head up.
“Regina! What’s happening ?!? Why ?? What can I do ??” I jumped towards her, trying to hold her head up, help her somehow.
“Feed… I need to feed…” She replied.
“But you’re already throwing it out!” I instantly replied.
“It’s mine ! It’s MINE !” I thought she was delirious (Gollum came to mind…), but then I remembered last night, put two and two together in what took me, shamefully, more than it should have, and realized that Regina stuck all of her into me, then sucked it all out to comply with my refusal of not turning. Never done before by her apparently, or rarely by anyone else. It meant death in most of the cases for a vampire. Also, I was pretty surprised it worked for me. By my understanding, I got her blood, healed, then all out again and left on the brink of death with maybe 20% of my juice still in? That seemed way over my limits of understanding biology and started going into “this is sorcery!” field.
Blood poisoning, karma, call it as you want, but you can’t drink all of your own blood and walk around with it. That would be something though, wouldn’t it? That was Regina right now. Poisoned by her own body.
I was perfectly aware I was in no condition to feed her, yet, I didn’t care, once again, and put my neck on her lips.
“NO! Go away! Not you! NO! THIS IS BECAUSE OF YOU!” She blurted out, although with less intensity (obviously) than what she would usually use.
What to do?
Well, believe me or not – I called room service.
What to order? Food? No. Takes too long.
Something to drink – but we have everything here!
Champagne! We don’t have that.
Dial room service – Russian speaking dude answers.
English with a lot of cracks, but understood my message.
Champagne, to me, five minutes ago!
I thought then: Look at myself, standing here, ordering Champagne, to celebrate maybe?
Celebrate what? My survival or Regina’s imminent death?
Because, however you would look at it, I had managed to bring Regina on the brink of death in a few short months. Something that nobody managed to do (I guess) in over five centuries. All because of a necklace.
In no time, room service was there.
“Take it to the bathroom.” I said without even looking at the man who delivered it. Without hello. I only hoped I would get to tip him (funny right? here’s ten euros for your mojo). I couldn’t stand the idea of someone dying because of me.
Not him, not a human being who, by the looks, looked innocent enough.
Regina was, of course, by any means, a killer with who deserved that punishment. For some, it was a blessing if you ask me, but she also
was a philanthropist with those who need not die.
Which is very, very rare in the kinship.
There are others like her of course, but they are like a fistful of pepper, thrown in a bucket of salt.
As soon as the room service guy went inside the bathroom, I stepped behind him and closed the door.
I didn’t want to hear what was going to happen next. But I did.
Large thuds, screams, growls, glass breaking.
Seconds later she stepped outside the bathroom. Blood smeared all over her, although mostly hers. I was sure she was not in the position to let a single drop of good blood go to waste. And she didn’t.
“Is he dead?” I asked.
“He’ll live.” She replied. I was relieved.
“We need to leave.” She added and with a swift move she closed in on me and put her left hand behind my back, her right hand on my wound. Kissing me and checking for the wound in the same time. She seemed pleased.
After she released I also took her wrists and looked at her neck to see how she was. What was I expecting? There was nothing there anymore.
She wasn’t smiling anymore. She was angry. Not at what happened, not for what she might have learned from those… assassins of mine, but at me. I had declined being turned, and we both knew that was a problem.
I couldn’t remain like this forever – even she had to obey the Codex at some point. But for now, she let it slide.
Before I even managed to wash my face she had showered, got dressed and taken on her shoes. I was either slow or she was too fast.
“Regina… what you did last night… you do realize that is nothing short but of a miracle?” I added. I was expressing my thoughts out loud.
“But at what cost?” She replied, almost hissing at me.
“I am no angel.” She added. I didn’t understand until later on what she had meant.
“Yes, but you risked it all… to save me.” I replied.
She said nothing, but I knew what she was thinking.
One does not discover new lands without consenting to lose sight of the shore for a very long time.
– Andre Gide
And that was what she did now, but also five centuries ago, when she decided to leave the shore and join the world which she was now a part of. To discover it, you had to leave your land, your life, your comfort and venture into the unknown. But that is a story to be told another time.
We quickly left the room and on our way downstairs, sure enough, a ‘gang’ of three kinship members, men, were going up, bowing their head to Regina very, very subtle as we passed one another. I had assumed they were the cleaning crew. I still don’t know how Regina managed to send for anything she needed without using any means of communication. She must have some sort of… I gave up on trying to find out long ago.
In no time, we were shiny, in the airport, headed for France.
Russia, Moscow (SVO) – France, Le Mans (LME) the tickets read. Again handed by someone inside the airport, already bought and paid for. I started to think this was a charter flight, planned in advanced, it looked like one, but it didn’t feel like one.
As the plane started shaking when taking off, I was once again remembered I’m still human. My left side hurt at each move, each shake.
But I was alive, and I was headed for France, with a few hours to spare, used to put some order in my thoughts.
I opened my laptop and started putting everything down, while it was still fresh, although at the moment, that was the last thing I wanted to do. Remember everything again.
*** Stop asking for photos with Regina. That wouldn’t just be useless for this story, but also impossible. You must imagine how preposterous such a request is, in case you read the story, you must understand.
I can, however, provide other photos, in private. But nothing that cannot be faked or is easily available on the net. I can provide, for example, photos with my scars, taken years later.
Some have asked: Well, if you can’t post a photo with her, then maybe post a photo with a famous actress or someone who looks like her. So we can form an image.
My response on that is: shame on you and fine, I will, as soon as I find something appropriate. I can’t stress this enough, she’s hard to match.
…the student must overcome the master is bullshit. [story part 18]
February 24, 2012 § 2 Comments
Before starting this part of the story, I really have to make you understand something important for later in the post. You have to understand how resilient and how strong, how complex and magnificent the human body is.
Nowadays, humans see themselves as inferior, physical wise, to animals. a human will think that, just because he doesn’t have claws, fangs or super-speed, he is inferior in all ways to a predator.
I have to tell you, the human body is the most complex and amazing killing machine that ever walked this earth. Your body can do much, much more than what you give it credit for. And it can withstand much more damage than you would think. That is the human body, and we compensate for not having deadly fangs with brains, but when it comes to resilience, we’re as tough as it gets.
Just because today, we rarely run and jump, we sit in front of the laptop, read books and drive everywhere, it doesn’t mean that our body is any less prepared to deal with the wild nature than it was thousands of years ago.
Even if you feel your body stiff, rigid, tired – in a short two or three months you can turn your body from a piece of walking meat into a killing machine. Your body can perform jumps and twists, can climb faster, higher and easier to heights that not even the most advanced predators of the African savanna can.
Especially when fear comes into play. When your body is shot up with adrenaline, it goes into overdrive, it becomes ten times stronger, and that is not an exaggeration. It is something that has been documented. your body becomes purely amazing. It stops feeling pain, joy, it goes numb and invincible. It transforms from a vessel of your life into a weapon of destruction and survival.
If a big cat, like a panther could think in such a way, it would be jealous of the human body.
Did you know that the human body is among the very, very few creatures that can run for an undefined time? You can keep running and running. Few animals can do that, most of them sprint and then have to stop.
But regarding to strength, the human body is amazing. you can do much more with your body because of your mind. you make use of the environment to help you, you use it wisely and you make split-second decisions without thinking twice. Most big predators cannot do that.
Ok this is getting too long – but remember this: the human body is the most advanced piece of biology out there, and it is a perfect survival and killing machine.
Now, watch this thing, which illustrates precisely what I am trying to say: please watch this.
By all means, please, watch that.
That movie is you and me. It is the human body in action. You should be more proud of it, take more care of yourself and give yourself more credit. We are not the dominant species on this Earth for nothing.
Now, imagine all that you saw in the movie, and add the strength of another twenty men in that body and over four hundred years of training in doing that. Try to picture the result of that.
It was the 27th of May, 2005…
…after watching Regina sleep like an innocent kitten almost all day, she finally woke.
The night before, I had planned on taking a bath and going straight to sleep, but just as I was falling asleep, you know that feeling of weightlessness, I felt a sharp sting behind my shoulder. I instantly realized what’s going on and I stayed still, but then I turned around to nag on her about the manners.
She was actually playing with me, again. By the time I had turned around to pick on her, she was faking being asleep, eyes closed, and a big smile on her face, a kind of “trying to control not to smile, trying to be asleep”.
I didn’t say a word, I just kept staring at her, knowing she would feel my stare and eventually give up. She did, in about five seconds.
Without opening her eyes, still smiling, she said: “I’m really starving you know…”
“Order room service then!” I said.
Then I realized what I had just said, and also realized she was actually giving it a good thought whether it would be a good idea or not.
I smiled and went closer to her.
And by the way, sleeping with her behind you was pretty much like taking a snake in your bed and turning your back to it, hoping it won’t kill you overnight. That’s what it felt, in the beginning, but by now I was used to it.
I knew that there’s no such thing as “you have to ask” in her world. She just took whatever she wanted, when she wanted it. So I stopped nagging her and just offered more.
The interesting part was that, even though she seemed in a frenzy, with fangs fully extended, eyes darkened and red glowing deep inside her retina, she was perfectly lucid, smiling and talking with me. I had hoped this change would be permanent, and that she could always be like this.
She had a bad habit of actually holding my head stiff, with both her hands, sometimes so stiff that I couldn’t even talk, not that I wanted to talk during her… lunch. But at times it hurt, it felt as I was caged, or disabled. I felt trapped when she took my head with both her hands. I think it was a gesture developed over the years, years in which most of her dinners tried running away.
This time I gently pushed her hair from over her face and leaned over her, I took both her hands with my hands and pinned them above her head, her eyes widened and she started smiling with a mouth that went from ear to ear.
She didn’t say anything just pursed her lips and closed her eyes, but instead of offering her mine, I leaned over her and offered something that she made abundantly clear earlier that she wanted. I rested my neck on her lips and because I was tensed above her, blood flowing in my head which was tilted down, I could feel my pulse in my neck and head.
She rested her lips on my neck without moving, for few seconds, enjoying the feeling of my pulse that she felt on her lips, and then, she bit.
I barely felt it, I actually enjoyed it more than I should have, but then, unlike any other time, she released, and just stood there, mouth open, with me above her, my pulse doing the rest.
It didn’t need any sucking, she was now beyond bloodsucking. She stood there, under me, mouth wide open, eyes closed, still smiling.
She took the wound in her mouth from time to time, more kissing it than sucking on it, and we just stood like that for what seemed like hours.
I could tell she enjoyed it more than she would actually enjoyed sucking it. It gave her a feeling of… freedom. Of not guilty. Of offering. This is what total offering felt from my part. She didn’t need to do or say anything. She didn’t need to hold her prey so it doesn’t run. Her prey came willingly to her and offered itself.
“Bite me.” She said.
“No… I don’t… I’m not.. Why would I bite you?” I replied. I don’t remember the actual conversation, but I do remember it was pretty mind-boggling. Why would I… Was she proposing what I was thinking? She wanted to turn me there and then! I was over-reacting.
“Bite me, I want to remember how it feels…” She said again.
I complied. I bit her neck, as hard as I could, but my “fangs” were not even close to being able to make such tiny holes, I didn’t give up and I bit as hard as I could until I felt her blood in my mouth. I felt sick.
It tasted coppery, iron like. Warm and nasty. How could they enjoy this was beyond my understanding.
She made a feint sound in the process and then she put a finger on her wound and touched my neck wound with her blood. For healing, I remembered Viktoria telling Sophia the same thing.
Her neck wound was almost healed completely by the time I even released with my mouth. And it also seemed to me that there was way less blood than it should have been, it was like instant cleaning. Don’t tell me they absorb blood with their skin because that’s too much. My imagination was running wild again, “they”, of course, didn’t. She just didn’t bleed as much as I did.
Where does the “human body is amazing part” come into this story?
Well, let’s go back to the start of the post, where I was telling you how I watched Regina sleeping almost all day.
Finally, just as the sun was going down, she woke. Still smiling.
She was literally radiating with life – I just wanted to be able to feed her more often, so I can see her more like this – but I couldn’t. I already had carrot juice and steak, for breakfast. Who eats that for breakfast? I did. With my little knowledge of biology I knew that red meat and carrot juice would help me the most. In any case, I didn’t feel pale or dizzy. I felt just fine. I was already planning on feeding her again, tonight.
So where does the little “human body is amazing” come into play?
The rest of that day I had spent it inside the hotel, a big, scary looking man, with absolutely no language skills except Russian came into the room with two boxes, big boxes. Then he left and continued getting more and more and more boxes.
Regina and I had spent almost the whole day staying inside the room and just picking clothes from the boxes. I can’t stress this enough, the clothes were all new, original, well-known brands. I didn’t care how and where the man got them, I loved them anyway.
They were “a welcoming present from him”. Interesting enough, didn’t care. I was a fashion addict anyway, way before meeting Regina. And we needed clothes! We did!
Regina went out that night and didn’t return until the next day on the 28th, after sundown.
Needless to say I was not only bored out of my skull but also as angry as a “girlfriend left behind” can be.
I forgot about all my anger as soon as I saw her and we pretty much repeated everything we had done in the first night.
I’m skipping this fast forward with no extra details until the 29th.
We woke up on the 29th around 14:00 and Regina said, instead of good morning.
“I’ve decided you will stay here.”
“The hell I am. I don’t care where you’re going but you’re either taking me with you or I’m going home. I didn’t come with you to stay in a hotel.” I replied determined to do what I said. I really intended in going home if she left me behind again.
“Fine then, but it’s dangerous and if something were to happen…” She agreed.
“Then it’s your fault. ” I said, and smiled.
She didn’t say anything, which actually meant that she agreed on what I had just said.
“Where are we going anyway?” I added.
“Well, Nikita asked me to come and deal with a group of critters because apparently it would be of a personal interest to me.” She said.
“Who is Nikita?” I replied.
“The elder of this zone.” She answered.
“And how is it personal to you…” I added, referring to how else, beyond the fact they were kinship.
“Somebody turned over night, almost a whole building, there are apparently over twenty of them…” She said.
“Few vampires can do that… and I know them all.” She added.
It turned out, that, if you wanted to mass-turn humans, you needed to be really old. Because you needed to feed them your blood, and it would have to be the one or the other. As in: either quality (old blood) or quantity. And how quantity is limited even in a vampire… There’s only so much you can do if you’re not old.
However, Regina, Viktoria, and a few older ones, could literally turn a human with two or three sips.
“So what are you thinking?” I asked.
“I’m thinking that I need to deal with this, and then find out who did it.” She replied.
It wasn’t forbidden to turn humans, of course not. You could turn as many as you wanted, no issues there. But there was still the issue of letting them run freely, no Codex no nothing…
“I’m hoping that it’s someone older than me, and the only one older than me that I’ve ever met is…” she trailed off
“Your maker?” I replied.
“Yes.” She said.
“What was his name?” I asked.
“Sigismund…” she said and trailed off looking down at the floor.
“Like a father.” I said.
“Yes, like a father.”
I gave up on that and stopped asking questions.
We spent the next couple of hours down in the dinning hall, she studied a book the whole time, turned it in all directions like it was a Playboy issue not an old manuscript, and I mainly spent my time online, occasionally stopping to talk with Regina.
As soon as the sun went down, we left the hotel.
In no time we were on our way towards the “vampire nest”. We passed the Red square on our way there and I could only feel regret that it wasn’t daylight so I could see it better. I also felt regret for not being able to take photos, any photos, Regina made that abundantly clear time and time over. No photos, ever. Fine. I didn’t like taking photos anyway, I would rather take them with my mind.
We walked for about thirty minutes before arriving in front of a soviet style apartment building which was in a very bad shape. Blackened on the sides and the first floor, all of it, had no windows. No apartments had windows at that floor.
We went inside like we were having a stroll through the park. No stealthy moves or anything, we just walked in. I followed Regina closely and she didn’t look back. Not even once. She just kept going without saying anything. We climbed to the top floor where, at the end of the corridor, there was an open door and sounds were coming out. Laughter and growls. I felt a hint of “why the hell did I insist in coming here…”
We continued going and Regina just strolled inside the apartment, through the open door, with me following, like she owned the place.
Inside the room there were four people, vampires by the looks on their faces. Blood was smeared all over the walls and Regina took a second to analyze the whole layout of the place.
They didn’t seem to realize, not even for a second, that they were facing another vampire. They simply assumed we were fresh food.
They stood up and started talking in Russian with Regina, smiling and approaching.
Regina said something back and then half turned her head to me and said: “Youngsters. A week maybe.” – I nodded and stepped towards a table which was just to my right, almost in the middle of the room.
Regina then started speaking louder and louder, it was like she was trying to order a pack of dogs to start counting to a hundred. It was clear, even without understanding Russian, that she didn’t reach to them. They just kept getting closer and closer, and by now their fangs were starting to extend.
Regina was still calm. No frenzy. I remember I told myself that, four of them don’t pose any danger to her. I tried reassuring myself of that but before I finished my thought I heard steps from the corridor and to my amazement, over ten or fifteen of them entered the room and encircled both me and Regina.
“I don’t wanna die.” I said.
Regina giggled and pulled out her big golden knife which seemed to be always with her.
She handed it to me.
“Just in case.” She said. And with that, all my bravery went down the drain. I felt shit scared and couldn’t even muster my strength to hold the damn thing, not even mention wielding it. I didn’t have the mental power to stab someone, no way. Still, I took it.
We were now circled by twenty critters, which apparently had no idea who Regina was, and that didn’t seem a good thing. Even for her strength, twenty of them seemed too much.
Imagine you’re in a poorly lit room, with twenty creatures you haven’t seen in your life, creatures with long fangs, dark eyes, elongated faces and sunken eyes. Creatures that were by now growling and hissing towards me, looking at me like I knew I looked at a very, very delicious cake.
They still had no idea Regina was not human. So young they were, some of them didn’t even knew what to look for.
A thing that I had read popped into my mind, and although I didn’t remember all of it, I remembered the main point of it. Here is the whole thing:
“Many classic horror icons, such as Geger’s Xenomorphs, Silent Hill’s Pyramid Head, and other disturbing creatures, share common characteristics. Pale skin, dark, sunken eyes, elongated faces, sharp teeth, and the like. These images inspire horror and revulsion in many, and with good reason. The characteristics shared by these faces are imprinted in the human mind.
Many things frighten humans instinctively. The fear is natural, and does not need to be reinforced in order to terrify. The fears are species-wide, stemming from the dark times in the past when lightning could mean the burning of your tree home, thunder could be the approaching gallops of a stampede, predators could hide in darkness, and heights could make poor footing lethal.
The question you have to ask yourself is this:
What happened, deep in the hidden eras before history even began, that could affect the entire human race so evenly as to give the entire species a deep, instinctual, and lasting fear of pale beings with dark, sunken eyes, razor-sharp teeth, and elongated faces?”
I think the whole thing above is really on to something. There seems to be an instinctual fear of these creatures, deep in our mind. Even a baby, who has no idea of the terms vampire and bloodsuckers or demons, will be frightened and cry as loud as he can if presented with such a creature. But then again, he could hug a lion or a black panther, having absolutely no fear of it. Proof of what I’m saying here. Would you think that the same baby would be smiling and be so oblivious to such a creature? I hardly doubt it. But look at the baby’s reaction when faced with the “worlds greatest predator”. Smiles.
Why is that? What really did happen, long, long ago in our history as a species, that we have such a fear of these “mythical” creatures? How old these creatures really are? Who were these creatures and where are they now? That is the question you have to ask yourself. Who else shared, or is still sharing, this world, with us?
I can’t even imagine how terrifying a creature needs to be, to imprint, biologically, a fear into another species mind.
Like the wolf for the deer or, in other words:
We are as scared of these creatures, instinctively, as the proverbial elephant terrified of the mouse.
Back to the story,
Keeping in mind what I have said above, I was in that situation. I was in an ancient time, a time when man was deeply terrified with the images of such creatures. And I was surrounded by over twenty of them. I was shaking deeply from the bottom of my everything.
One of them, more impatient I think, because they don’t really have a pack like approach in attacking, jumped towards me and Regina literally stuck her hand inside his chest and pulled it out quickly. He fell to the floor, dead. I really think she crushed his very heart in under a second.
When I looked at her, the Regina I knew was gone. The attack of a “critter” directed towards me had been enough to set her off.
Those pale creatures I was talking about, seemed nothing compared to her face.
She was now in her battle stance, knees bent, straight back, arms slightly detached from around her body, as like she was forming a “my circle” area.
Even I, was by now, like I said above, instinctively afraid of her. Terrified, beyond reasoning. I knew all to well she didn’t intend on attacking me, yet, I was terrified of her. WHY?
She moved and breathed exactly like a predator. Her eyes, her head and her gestures were all quick. Quick start, quick stop. They were very well synchronized and controlled. She was watching all of them in short bursts jumping from point to point in the circle around us.
She was revolving around me and I was just standing there, paralyzed, with a big knife in my hand, no idea what to do with it.
The others needed about two or three seconds to realize three things:
A) The one that attacked was dead before they even had the chance to realize it.
B) They were facing one of them.
C) She looked more menacing than them.
But then again, they weren’t thinking rationally. And just like that, they jumped at us.
And don’t picture Hollywood movies here. They didn’t jump at us one at a time, like in the movies. Waiting in between for Regina to finish him off. No. They all jumped ON TOP of us, in the same time.
It was the most terrifying feeling I ever had in my life. I remembered the scene in the movie “The mummy” when one of them was literally encased in a web made of those little bugs, scarabs they were called. I felt exactly like that.
I remember I started swirling that damn knife like a mad-man in any direction I could. A game I had played really helped me out here, I’m talking about “World of Warcraft” which most of you might have played. I remembered an advice I got from a friend in the game: “When facing a melee enemy, always put your back behind a wall so you at least can be sure he can’t kill you from behind.”
I did just that. I put my back behind the closest wall and started swooshing the knife in all directions. I turned over the table to my left and started screaming like a girl.
And now comes the part with “the human body is amazing”.
I presented that, so this next part won’t seem so science fiction.
When they all jumped on us, Regina literally pushed them in a single swirl around me, aside. All of them. And then, with a speed that really was too intense for me to observe closely. It wasn’t supernatural or anything the like. It wasn’t a blur or some magic. It was just really, really fast, and really, really well synchronized.
She was literally dancing around the room, ripping heads off in the process, bouncing between walls, ceiling, floor, and the critters. She jumped and twisted in the same time in the air, landed on top of another of them, and bounced from him in a wall. I was watching an artistic ice skating competition of death.
She jumped from that wall pushing herself hard towards the ceiling and then ricocheted from the ceiling towards a large group of them.
She was dancing a deadly dance. They were listening the last song they will ever hear.
The whole thing couldn’t have taken more than ten seconds. Without a knife, she bounced from wall to wall, using everything in the room she could find. I heard bones cracking, skulls being crushed and screams coming from each direction. She was killing faster than I could turn my head.
Three of them eventually grabbed me and my knife proved to be pretty useless at that point. They grabbed me and before Regina could get to me they had managed to bite me in five different places, and I had felt each and every bite, and then I saw and felt them flying off me. But two of them held my hands so tightly that they managed to break both of them when Regina took them off me.
I don’t think I’ve ever felt more pain in my life, hearing my own bones crack, and that, combined with the bites I had all over my body… was just… a feeling that would make anyone faint, if not for the adrenaline and the fear.
In any case, Regina didn’t seem to have any issues with them at all. It was just a matter of “can’t kill fast enough”. They all tried biting her, jumping towards her and others but she had successfully dodged each and every attack thrown towards her. Matrix is nothing compared to what she did.
If this seems to much for you, watch the movie about the human body above again. And then imagine her, doing that, but amplified by twenty.
She was jumping in the air, doing a twist, biting one and killing another with her other free arm in the same time. She took two or three at a time and had no problems in dodging all their attacks. She was just that much stronger, more flexible and faster than any of them.
After she had taken those two off me, she took the knife from the floor and literally decapitated two of them in one single blow. The last two of them.
I cannot explain this in enough detail or cannot stress this enough: Life does indeed, beat movie. Every, single, time. No movie, and I’ve seen a lot of them, ever managed to portray such a thing. No superhero or vampire, in any movie, managed to have such deadly and fast moves. This was just so much better than a movie. It was just… I… you cannot put this in a movie.
It is like this: when you watch a horror movie, you might be scared, but that’s it. But if you ever stumbled upon a “forbidden” gore movie, like the ones in which the Talibans cut the head off a journalist, which you knew it was 100% real, you know what I mean.
Horror movies make you scared, real, gore movies, in which you see a head being cut off for real, make you sick and dizzy, make you scared from your very essence, make you absolutely paralyzed.
Silence fell over the whole floor, the whole world it seemed to me. I was loosing blood, my hands were hurting and by now I was cold as hell.
When I tried moving I felt a sharp pain in my back and when I looked down, I had a piece of wood, the foot of the table, stuck deep inside my abdomen. On the left side, and I could barely breathe. Blood was flowing from me like a river. So much with feeding Regina tonight. I knew it was my spleen, and I also knew a perforated spleen usually meant death from blood loss.
The only thing that I remember next was Regina walking around casually between them, searching for something on the floor. She picked one of them and started talking with him.
He was missing a hand – I was not delirious – he really was. I felt my stomach trying to exit through my mouth.
I was so scared and so wounded I didn’t knew what to do, scream, cry, start begging god to spare my life… My head was a mess. I remember I just lied there on the floor, unable to move eventually, shivering and thinking: “This is it, this is how I’m going. I’m too young. I don’t wanna die. I’ll start going to church if I survive through this. I don’t wanna die. This is it…”
I was so scared I started puking, I puked everything I had inside me and then I started puking more, with nothing but a yellow, bitter, nasty liquid coming out. At least I was not coughing up blood like the movies had taught me it usually happens before you die, but I was pretty sure I’m was going to die either way.
The wooden thing was still inside me – I left it there intentionally remembering how it’s not good to pull it out until you’re ready to stitch the wound up. I had done everything I remembered you need to do in such cases, but I couldn’t have taken it out anyway, my arms failed me.
I just remember staying there in my own blood and puke, shivering, and everything was spinning around with me.
I heard a very, very loud noise in my ears, the kind of high pitch noise you hear now and then, but this was really intense.
I also remember a very ugly feeling, a cold sweat encasing me. It is a really disturbing feeling, having a cold sweat. I had heard the term before, but never felt it. Now I did, and it was worse than I had imagined.
I don’t remember anything else afterwards.
I didn’t dream anything, nothing. I didn’t have genius moments in my dreams nor did I see “all my life flash in front of my eyes”. I didn’t see no light at the end of no tunnel, I didn’t see any relatives calling me to them. No. It was black. I had died. I’m sure, somewhere deep, deep down inside, that night, maybe for a second maybe for more, I was dead.