BloodlinebyAlex the Cat©
Disclaimers: This story contains violence of which some may not be able to stomach. Be aware that this is a vampire story, which means it is dark and gruesome in some areas.
The cool wind blew the paper trash along the streets in small swirls. Under the glowing lamplight of the dark city, a black shadow silently swished past, unseen by the night life walking in and out of the various bars and shops.
In a damp alleyway, a figure has a hand clamped over a smaller person's mouth. The figure dragged the struggling body behind a couple of dumpsters. A large fist made contact with a face knocking the small person out. Clothes began to tear and legs were parted. Pants and belt were unbuckled. Before the figure had a chance to commit the intended deed, a black shadow appeared.
An audible blow to the back of the head and then the faint sound of flesh being pierced were heard in the now silently eerie alley. The shadow drank greedily of the perpetrator's life source.
The feel of the warm blood passing from the tongue, swishing through the mouth, and down into the stomach felt divine to Niki's senses. An exhale of warm breath through the nostrils made Niki relax as the blood continued to gush forth. Ah, the first feed of the night is always the best. The gush of the coppery liquid filling you and strengthening you like the adrenaline rush one gets when high on heroine. These are the thoughts that came to her mind.
The now lifeless body of the rapist lay in a heap like the rest of the garbage in the alley. His throat was torn open to look as if an animal had attacked him. Two iridescent blue-violet eyes glowed in the darkness. Anyone passing by would have only seen the two cerulean orbs looking back at him or her like the headlights of a car in the distance.
Niki picked up the curly hair brunette, the woman that the brute had chosen as his next prey, and brought her to a bus stop bench.
Brown eyes opened and a scream almost escaped her mouth before Niki quickly but gently placed a couple of fingers over the woman's lips.
“Shhh, you're safe.” Niki said in a low whisper. “Your nose may be broken but that's all. He did not have a chance to do anything else. You will never need to worry about him again, nor will you remember me or how you came to sit here.”
Wide-eyed and scared, the woman nodded as she saw how piercing those eyes were. They still had a glow about them but not as strong as moments before.
Niki stood to her full height of over six feet tall, and dressed in black leather from her neck to her feet. The only flesh visible was that of her face, which the long inky black tresses mostly hid.
In the blink of an eye, she was gone leaving the young woman stunned.
A short figure shrouded in the hood of a sweatshirt limped towards the edge of the platform. Looking up and down the long tunnel for any sign of the locomotive, small hands fingered the tiny bundle in the pocket of the shirt. Knowing that no one would care, she jumped off the edge and into the dark tunnel. The crunching sound of the rusty brown rocks beneath her feet reminded her of the rocky beach back home where brother and sister used to play.
There was only three minutes time before the roar of the engine would warn her of the fast approaching light. Carefully avoiding the metal rails in the darkness, she turned into the hole along the cement wall that was home and perched onto the tattered cardboard bed that was in the corner.
Out of the large front pocket, she removed her treasure. Inside a paper wrapped ball was a half-eaten sandwich she had found in the trash on Rush Street. She inspected it carefully and was satisfied there wasn't any sign of filthy decay. Taking a bite, she tried to contain her overwhelming hunger so as not to vomit later. She had learned the hard way that after so long of not eating, the body would begin to reject food when eaten. In fact, everything in Gabriella's life was learned the hard way. She wished things were different ----- wished she wasn't living on the streets, not having anything to eat for days on end, and doing things to survive that made her hate herself.
After her meager meal, she decided to lie down. A pain stung her nether regions, and she knew her period started. She hated getting her period ever since she got that STD because it caused her more pain in the immediate area when the blood and infection would mix as it trickled out. She got out of her jeans and into the long black skirt she kept handy for such times. It was better to soak the skirt with blood because it washed out better than the pants.
She lay back down and thought of her brother, hoping he was still alive and doing better than she was. She then pulled out a tattered piece of paper from a niche in the wall. Reading the words of the letter that were written to her a few years ago caused some tears to spill down her cheeks. She caressed the muted ink on the paper with her fingers as she read the last thing she received from him when she actually had an apartment. She now wondered and hoped he was in a happier state than herself. Wiping the teary streaks from her face with the back of her dirty hand, she folded the letter back up, and returned it to its original spot. She then pulled out another letter, this one looking more worn and tattered than the first and began to read the last loving words of her grandmother.
Jet-black tendrils of long hair whipped in the sharp breeze of the fast moving train. The black shadow rode on the roof of the second car. On hands and knees, she gripped the metal bar running across the rooftop and enjoyed the feel of the rush. In fact, this was Niki's favorite way of riding the trains because she didn't have to deal with the many stares or the heady scent of so much blood surrounding her senses.
Suddenly she caught the whiff of that liquid iron. Making her way quickly to the back of the train, she leapt off in a graceful arc and almost silently landed on the rocky bed below with the train now disappearing behind her. She stood for a moment, waiting for her nose to pick up the scent again. There shouldn't be anyone down in these tunnels. Could someone be hurt? Maybe it's just an animal. No, the scent is too strong to not be human.
Niki quietly walked down the pathway. At one particular overhead lamp, there was an evident hole blown into the cement wall. With her perfect vision, she saw a prone figure in the dim light of what appeared to be a small room that lay beyond that wall. When she was inches away, the figure immediately sat up.
“Please don't hurt me. I'm sick and I don't have any money.” Gabriella scooted back against the vertical cement, and quickly tucking the folded letter into her pocket, she braced herself for the worst.
“I will not harm you. I give you my word.” The lilting contralto voice said. She crouched down and looked at the ashy gray figure. “Are you hurt?”
“Sick.” A simple response and right to the point. Gabriella kept her guard up and held her arms locked in front of her. From experience she knew that people couldn't be trusted. Yet there was still a minute part of her, from childhood, that felt everyone should be given a chance.
Niki looked carefully at the small woman. The smell of blood made her nostrils flare and her head spin. She quickly tried to compose herself. “I…I can get you medicine. Are you cut anywhere?” The smell of that blood is sweet and strong. She must have an open wound of some kind.
“No. I have an infection.”
“I can help you. Would you like to come with me?” Niki's compassion for humans, especially the innocent, always got the better of her. She felt driven to help this young woman.
“I can't go to the hospital. If they find me, they'll arrest me.” The young blonde said as she tightly wrapped bony arms around legs bent up against her chest.
There is something ----- something about her that is familiar. But what is it? The stress of the streets has really taken a toll on her body, and yet she is still beautiful. Niki continued to think. She doesn't want the hospital. Hmm…wonder what or whom she fears. “Okay, no hospital then. I will take you to my home. You'll be safe there.” Niki slowly extended her gloved hand.
“And what do you want in return?” The small woman spat out.
Niki understood what she meant, and became angry that others before her have abused this small creature. “I expect nothing. I just want to help you. You are free to leave when you desire.” She continued to hold out her hand.
Gabriella stared at the figure and saw a faint glowing flicker in those ocean blue eyes. Even in the semi-darkness, the eyes shown brilliantly, and she felt mesmerized by them. It was as if those eyes were speaking to her soul. She suddenly felt herself reach out and take the offered hand.
Out on the streets, Niki lead her to the shiny black Harley Davidson. They rode for sometime before turning into a drive that led up to a large stone house. It was the only house in the immediate area, and it didn't make Gabriella feel any better that there was a cemetery on the other side of the road.
As they walked in, Niki, out of habit, didn't bother turning on any of the lights. She didn't need to, and didn't think her guest would have need for them. In fact it was rare for her to turn the lights on when she could see perfectly in the dark. Up the tightly wound spiral staircase they went and into the first room on the left. Here the tall figure flipped on the light, because she had to inspect her guest's injuries, and she didn't want to make the situation look too suspicious if she did the inspection in the dark.
The room was large and appeared to be completely unused. There was a queen size bed near the huge picture windows and glass balcony doors. Only one painting hung on the wall over the bed that was about as big as the bed itself. It showed a luscious green and grassy forest with a dirt pathway cutting right through it. Gabriella felt like she could almost step into the picture and get lost amongst the trees.
“You can stay in this room. The bathroom is right through there,” she pointed to her right, “and it connects into my room. How about we start you out with a hot bath, and then I'll check your injuries and infection. I have a cabinet full of medicine, we'll see what you'll need.”
“Is it real medicine or drugs to knock me out so you can do what you want?” Gabriella questioned sarcastically.
The tall figure turned to face her. “I said I wouldn't harm you. I gave you my word.”
Gabriella looked down at the greenish gray carpeting with guilt. “I'm sorry.” She didn't mean to be rude, it wasn't in her nature, but after so long of being used and abused, she had forgotten what true kindness was.
“No need to be. I'm sure it's not easy believing a stranger truly wants to help you without anything in return.” She turned on the bathroom light and began filling the tub. “Are you hungry?”
The short woman nodded, and then said, “Yes. And…um…I… I have my period.”
So that's what I smell! Niki thought for a moment. “I'll check to see if I have something. Take your time with the bath until I return.” With that she walked out.
Gabriella looked around at the expansive bathroom. The tub was a Jacuzzi, and everything was in shades of black or gunmetal gray, even the towels. But the bright lighting in the room made up for the dark porcelain. She removed her clothing and stepped into the steaming liquid. It felt so good to be able to wash herself of the grime and filth of the streets. She hated being dirty, but didn't have much choice in the matter when homeless. She eyed the various bottles of soap along the tub's edge near the glass blocks that made up the window. Grabbing the one with the purple liquid, she sniffed it. Hmm, lavender mint --- how nice. Picking up a washcloth, she then proceeded to rid her body of the layers of disgust.
In the time it took to enjoy and finish the bath, Niki sped out to the store and local burger joint to obtain the needed items. When she stepped into the bedroom again, Gabriella emerged wearing the only robe she found hanging behind the door.
“I didn't want to put my filthy clothes back on.” She commented shyly.
“That's fine. I'm glad you found the robe.” A flash of memory shot through Nikita's mind. In that instant, she realized that in all of the woman's cleanliness, she was the spitting image of her lost love from long ago. She shook her head momentarily, and said, “Here…are some tampons and pads. I didn't know which you'd want.”
“Thank you. I used your razor to shave. I hope you don't mind.” Gabriella responded as she went back into the bathroom.
“Of course not.” Niki said and proceeded to wait for her. Upon seeing the young woman emerge again, she then said, “Let me inspect you first before eating.” She placed the bags of food on the table in the center of the room that contained a large vase of fresh flowers. She pulled the syringe that she picked up across the hall, out of her vest pocket, and waited for the young woman to return from the bathroom.
Gabriella sat on the bed and looked at the tall figure clad in the black leather pants and black T-shirt. The arms appeared rather pale but healthy and muscular.
“I need to draw some blood to run a test.” She approached slowly then stopped when she smelled the fear emanating from the young blonde. “Please…I just need a small amount in order to assess exactly what you have. You're welcomed to draw the blood yourself.” Niki held out the syringe in her open palm.
“No…it's okay…go a-head.”
The veins protruded through the thin veil of sickly gray flesh still clinging to Gabriella's body. Niki felt such compassion for this small woman. She took only a half a syringe full, and left the room. She closed the door behind her to the room across the hall, and leaning against the wood she popped open the syringe and drank its contents. The warm liquid tasted sweet and it aroused her. Within a moment she knew what the girl was suffering from. She became somber and tossed the syringe and needle into the small container hanging on the wall. Walking across the room to the locked cabinet, she opened it and pulled out three small bottles.
The young woman's nose was picking up the scent of the hot food on the table. Her stomach grumbled, so she tried to think of something else. She didn't want to be a rude guest by tearing through the food in her hunger. She scooted back and leaned against the cherry wood headboard. The room looked beautiful even in its sparse state. It wasn't necessarily homey, but she did feel welcomed.
Niki returned and took a seat at the end of the bed. Without looking at the young woman, she said, “You have gonorrhea and syphilis. A bacterial infection is also developing in your lungs. It may be due to the many rainy nights we've had lately.” She then looked into pale green eyes.
Gabriella turned away in shame. Now someone else knew of her despicable past.
“I have the medicine you'll need…”
“I didn't…have a choice.” She softly said. “I was…forced into doing it or be killed. He said he'd kill me if I didn't work for him.”
The tall woman closed her eyes in sadness. “And is he the one you fear will find you?”
“I'm sorry.” She ran a large hand through her black locks as she exhaled audibly. “What is his name?”
“Oscar McDowell.” Gabriella couldn't believe she spout out the name of her despised employer, so quickly. She found herself compelled to move and sit next to the tall woman. There was something that Gabriella found so comforting in this mysterious beauty. “But you can't involve the cops. He has them working for him, and they'll find me.”
“Don't worry, I won't say anything to anyone outside of this room.” She paused a moment, contemplating on whether she should ask the next question. “Did…he beat you?”
Gabriella nodded, and looked down at the floor once again. “Made me lose my baby. That was the maddest I ever saw him --- when he found out I got pregnant from one of the johns ---- he threw me to the floor and kicked me continuously in the stomach until I passed out. I woke up in the hospital a day later.”
Jaws and hands clenched at hearing what happened. All Niki wanted to do was rip that bastard's beating heart right out of him and shove it in his mouth. Out of compassion she gently reached out to cover the woman's small hand with her own. Instantly, images of her lost love pervaded her mind --- images of them laughing, loving, crying, and saying goodbye. Involuntarily she whispered, “Gabrielle.”
The small blonde turned to her with wide eyes. “How did you know?” She then noticed how cool this woman's hand was to the touch.
The flashes of memories stopped. “Are you saying your name is Gabrielle?”
“Actually it's Gabriella. My grandmother was Gabrielle.”
Oh gods. Did I just hear what she just said? Is it possible she is from Gabrielle's bloodline? How foolish am I being now? I can clearly read her thoughts if I so choose, and yet I'm trying to deny why she is so familiar. That would explain… “And your last name?”
“It's O'Connor. Are you okay?”
It is she. My vampire senses know it's true and still I almost don't want to believe it. “Um…yes. Let's…get some medicine in you so your body can start healing.” She took out another syringe and filled it with two different liquids. “I'm giving you Rocephin and Penicillin.” She showed the woman the labels on the bottles. “It'll take care of everything.”
Gabriella nodded, and held out her arm.
“Um…this needs to be injected into your rear.”
“Oh.” She slowly stood up and pushed aside the robe to present her backside. Feeling the cool touch of the hand on her ass, she closed her eyes wondering why the touch felt familiar and so comfortable. Then the pierce of the needle pushed the thoughts aside as the searing liquid burned in the immediate area.
“Okay, now I want you to take these,” she held up the bottle of pills. “It's fluconazole --- to prevent a vaginal yeast infection from the strong doses of antibiotics. Take one in the morning and one at night.” She handed it to her. “Well, I guess we should eat. Hopefully the food is not stone cold.” Grabbing the bags, she divided the food between them. Niki kicked off her motorcycle boots and sat Indian style on the mattress.
“Thank you for picking this up. Actually thank you for everything…um…”
“My name is Nikita Cavarati. But Niki is fine.”
“Thank you Niki. So, are you a doctor?”
The long figure avoided eye contact, wondering how best to answer that question without suspicion arising. “Yes, you can say that. I don't practice anymore though. I just do a lot of research now.”
Gabriella took a bite of the double cheeseburger. It tasted so good. Mmm, how nice to have fresh food and not something I found in the trash. “Um…what were you doing down in the tunnels?”
She stopped in mid chew trying to come up with a good answer. “I…I thought I saw a lost dog run into the tunnel. I wanted to try and rescue it, but…I couldn't find it and found you instead.” She hoped that was a good enough of an answer.
“Oh, I see.” Gabriella responded with a hint of skepticism, but decided not to pursue the question further until later.
The clock struck 3:33am. A small figure started mumbling into the silent night air. Something was grabbing her --- hurting her. She struggled against this faceless form --- her arms thrashing from side to side.
From the doorway, Nikita quickly sprinted and took the young woman in her arms. “Gabriella, it's me --- it's Niki. You're safe.”
The blonde awoke from her nightmare and stared into ocean blue eyes.