tagSci-Fi & FantasyGhosts Ch. 07

Ghosts Ch. 07

byzombiegirl28©

Author's notes- I genuinely apologize to anyone who was traumatized by the last chapter. I sort of have a twisted mind, and tend to write things that are pretty dark...I tried to use more foreboding tags this time! But just as a general warning- this is not a lighthearted story or a romance. It's basically science fiction/horror with a lot of deviant, sometimes violent, often disturbing sex. It's fucked up. But if you have a twisted imagination like mine and appreciate that sort of thing- read on! And thanks for the feedback. I know this is a relatively short chapter- the next chapter will be much longer, but it might be a few weeks before I submit it.

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I couldn't have been out for more than a few seconds. When I opened my eyes again, the shower had been turned off and I was lying prone on the floor, dripping. But the water on me was still warm and steam billowed out of the open shower door in the bathroom. The light seemed way too bright. I did a quick mental assessment of my physical state, wiggling my fingers and toes slightly. One very broken arm. One dizzy, achy head that was just starting to pound. A few bruises here and there. Everything else appeared intact. I pushed myself up and stood on shaky legs. I felt vaguely unattached to my own body.

Some of the steam cleared and I saw him standing in front of the sink, drying his very lean, naked body. He looked so relaxed, so casual about everything. He was no longer giving off his crazy evil vibes. He turned and looked at me, and I just blinked at him, unsure what to do. Afraid of doing the wrong thing. He studied me for a moment. I was reminded of Brent in his lab, meticulously filling a latex glove with water and checking for leaks. That was how the vampire was looking at me right now. When he didn't find what he was looking for, he frowned and thrust the towel towards me. I took it and began to dry off the best I could with one hand, avoiding my bad arm.

When he stepped towards me I flinched, but otherwise managed to stay still as he approached. I didn't think I could remain upright if I moved around too much anyway.

"Easy. I'm just going to help you out."

He took the towel from me and began wiping me down gingerly, being careful with my broken arm. I didn't know the cause for this sudden gentleness, and it made me nervous. I felt like there was no way to guess what he might do next. Then he was wrapping me in a big white robe, leaving the broken arm on the inside, because it was way too swollen now to put through a sleeve. I allowed myself to be led into the living room and positioned on the couch, but I just stared at the ground, slouched there. Other than the persistent throb of my cradled arm, my mind was blissfully blank. I heard him moving around, getting dressed, opening doors and shuffling things, but I kept my eyes fixed on the carpet. I wasn't planning on doing anything unless he specifically instructed me to.

I heard the window being unlocked and opened behind me, and after a few seconds I heard Lex's sigh.

"Are you going to come in or are you just going to stay out there judging me?"

A moment of silence passed. I heard another exasperated sigh from Lex, then the window shutting. I didn't even completely look up when I felt the couch dip beside me as he sat down, hauling some kind of bag with him. Only when he started removing what looked like medical supplies and setting them on the coffee table did I turn my full attention to what he was doing.

He had the makeshifts of a splint, and a syringe full of orange liquid, which sat ominously on the table in front of us. I tried not to think about why he might be keeping a full medical kit in the locked room. But as he picked up the syringe and flicked it a few times, getting the bubbles out, my anxiety got the better of me.

"What is that?" I asked, voice shaky.

He smiled at me gently. "It's just something to help the swelling go down. I can't set it until then."

Oh, he was going to patch me up himself. I had a moment of more extreme dismay, questioning his medical expertise, but then I pushed it aside. At least something was being done about it. At least he wasn't breaking the other one yet.

He carefully removed the robe from my left side, and I sat motionless as he jabbed the needle in my arm and injected the liquid. It must have hurt, but my body was working overdrive making its own natural pain killers, and it wasn't even registering. I wasn't terribly surprised when the swelling started to recede visibly as he watched it, until within a few minutes most of it had disappeared, just leaving a gruesome, awkwardly angled excuse for an arm. Vampires were as brilliant with their pharmaceuticals as they were stingy with them. The scope of their drugs was so beyond that of anything humans had attempted. He picked up the makings of a splint and put them in his lap. I watched with a growing sense of alarm as he picked out a vile and filled another syringe with a milky white fluid. Great, I had gone right from the hands of a mad scientist to the care of a vampire with a mad doctor fetish. I wasn't positive which was worse, but I was pretty sure it was the latter. He turned his head halfway back towards me and met my eyes briefly.

"I'm going to set the bone. It will be quick, but you'll probably pass out again."

His tone was matter of fact. Before I could react, he grabbed my broken arm with both hands and wrenched it. For a moment I didn't even feel pain, just numbness, and a slight tingling sensation. Then it hit, in a great red wave and I lost consciousness.

**************************************************

I woke to a rich, heady smell of meat, onions and some kind of spice. I blinked and sat up slowly, pushing a fuzzy blanket off me as I did so. He had covered me up? Everything seemed bright and dark at the same time, and I felt weightless. There was no pain. I glanced at my arm and jerked. It was completely healed, if not well healed. There was a slight but visible ridge in the bone. I felt slightly sick, and I wondered what the hell he had given me to knit bone that quickly. Granted, it was better than having a broken arm, and I flexed my fingers experimentally. I experienced no pain at all, and I was a bit dizzy, but otherwise I was unfortunately alert. I closed my eyes again as a wave of nausea passed through me, but tried to focus on the sounds of the television, before realizing that was pointless. It was a vampire channel, and the Vamps on the show were speaking their indecipherable alien language. I opened my eyes to see Lex lounging in his armchair, and again I was reminded of lions in nature documentaries, content, full and resting after a sizeable kill. And indeed, in light of previous events, that probably wasn't far from the truth.

The way his eyes slid toward me and his head turned as if it was on a hinge was so creepily inhuman that I shuddered. Then he was looking at me with that strange expression again, like he was waiting for something, like he was checking for leaks.

"You've been out for a while. You needed the sleep, though, to heal. I gave you something for the pain. You have extraordinary tolerance, but that was a bit much, even for you."

He gestured towards my arm, and was silent for a beat, watching my reaction. I wondered if he expected me to thank him, or compliment his repair job. I said nothing, just fought another wave of dizziness. Then in a blur he was sitting on the couch beside me and I jumped, then slumped back into the cushion. I really wished he'd stop doing that. Why couldn't he just walk like a normal person? It was only a few feet away. Gently, he pulled me into his side and stroked my hair in a soothing manner. I tried not to cringe too much. I really didn't want him to touch me now. He kept stroking me until I relaxed slightly, and then he started to speak.

"Let's just get a few things straight, OK? I don't expect this to be a regular thing." He patted my shoulder slightly. "Last night, when you drank one of the most valuable items in my house"- I turned and looked at him, stunned- "you did it because you're impulsive and because you're an addict, but you also did it because you wanted to know what the stakes were."

He sighed then, staring at the far wall, rubbing my side now, as if I were a dog he was petting distractedly. His tone had been gentle, even it didn't quite match his words. He turned and looked at me,thoughtfully, and through the haze of painkillers and shock, fear started to rise full force. One of the most valuable items in his house? How could it have possibly been that expensive? I tried to remember more about what happened the previous night, but encountered nothing between drinking the wine and waking up next to him.

"Now you know the stakes." he said softly. He began running a finger over the side of my face. "You do what I tell you, when I tell you to do it, or you will be punished. You intentionally provoke me with your actions, and you will be punished."

He encircled his hand around my arm at the site of the break and squeezed, and I cringed, even though I felt not the slightest unpleasant sensation.

"This is a punishment."

I looked at him, and met his eyes with a growing sense of horror. It was amazing how quickly he'd trained me to make frequent eye contact, even though I was terrified of being glamoured. His expression contained understanding, but no sympathy.

"I don't have time for discipline problems. I expect complete obedience. That said"- he stroked along the side of my neck, gently but creepily- "never be afraid to speak your mind to me. There's a reason I didn't want a Ghost. You can speak freely, unless I specifically order you not to. In fact, I encourage it. I know almost no-one here, and I'm going to want some conversation from time to time."

I narrowed my eyes at him, confusion suddenly overtaking fear. I wasn't sure what he was saying, exactly, but it didn't seem to fit with my overall interpretation of his personality.

"I can say whatever I want to you?"

He nodded and looked at me steadily. "When I have your respect, sweetheart, it's going to be genuine. I don't want you to fake it. I want to see it happen."

Well, that allowance for free expression hadn't exactly been reassuring. Yet, what he was saying overall was actually encouraging in my current predicament. I desperately wanted him to be, if not a compassionate creature, at least a logical one. Maybe he was being serious. If I showed complete obedience, maybe he would show me lenience. Maybe he wouldn't be so brutal. Maybe it didn't have to be so bad.

No, who was I kidding? This was not okay. The degree of his power over me was sickening. He could break me apart and put me back together slightly wrong as often as he wanted, for a very long time. The horror I felt intensified as I looked at him, at his unearthly, unreadable eyes, and I plunged rapidly and unexpectedly into despair. Tears began to well up. Lex's expression changed-he looked like he was finally seeing what he had been watching for, and for some reason that was enough to push me over the edge into sudden, spontaneous bawling. He abruptly pulled me to his chest and rubbed my back in a comforting manner. I didn't have the energy to cringe anymore. I was lost. Time was passing, but I had no sense of it.

I really wished that he would stop holding me, soothing me. I already kind of hated him, but there were panicked parts of me that just wanted to cling to him, to anything, in the wake of the emotions he had just unleashed. I felt like something had cracked inside me. It was too much. And I was clinging to him, barely aware of it, burying my face in his chest, getting snot and tears all over his shirt, sobbing wretchedly, like some pitiful creature, as he stroked me and murmured to me in his strange, ancient-sounding language.

After a while, I managed to get it together a little and forced myself to let go of him. He released me easily, and I scooted back on the couch until I sat awkwardly in the crook of the armrest. I felt overwhelmed, and exhausted. I studied him with wary eyes, but he was momentarily unthreatening. A whining, insistent noise came from behind us and he smiled, standing up and facing the window. The dog was scratching at the glass, and I thought he looked kind of irritated.

"It's really funny how much trouble he has opening it from that side." He raised his hands and waggled his thumbs mockingly at the animal. "It's because he doesn't have these."

I was getting the impression that he talked to Jack quite a bit. It seemed a little weird, and I wondered how much the dog actually understood. The the soft whining that had been taking place turned into a vicious growling and Lex chuckled heartily. "He's so jealous of thumbs."

What the fuck.

Lex walked over to the window and opened it, and the big dog bounded over to me, jumped up on the couch and began licking my face. I grabbed him and pulled him against my chest like a shield. For a few moments, I felt like I had grabbed on to something solid. At least I had an ally in Jack.

Lex spoke to the dog instead of me. "All right, that's enough, she needs to eat something."

The dog glared at him. The animal's face was shockingly expressive, and I wondered if that was a feature provided by genetic manipulation, or if unnaturally smart dogs just used their faces differently.

Lex raised an eyebrow and glared at him. "Don't fuck with me, I've had a taxing evening."

The dog jumped down and trotted to his corner, but growled in protest. I briefly mourned the loss of the furry creature as a barrier between me and the scary vampire. Lex held out a hand to me, and I took it grudgingly. He supported me (I was still dizzy) as he led me to a seat in the kitchen.

"Now don't be expecting that I'll cook for you all the time." He pointed a finger at me. "Don't read anything into this." He opened a pot on the stove and stirred it, then ladled some in a bowl and sat it in front of me. He looked at me expectantly and I numbly spooned some in my mouth. It tasted amazing, and I suddenly realized I was ravenous. I ate more enthusiastically, savoring it. The vampire was an amazing cook. This was so fucking weird.

"I have some things for you."

I put my spoon down, but Lex shook his head.

"Keep eating."

I kept eating. The vampire grabbed a duffel bag from the floor beside him. I hadn't noticed the bag there before. Had it been there before? He unzipped it, and pulled out a small, circular device. It was electronic, and red, and not unlike the tracker around my ankle-except it was wider and had a barcode on it, along with symbols in Vamp language. He clicked it around my wrist, and I looked at it nervously.

"Do you know what that is?"

I shook my head. He pointed at the spoon.

"Keep eating."

I kept eating. Lex was pulling out a tablet and turning it on, typing in something on the keyboard. Then he showed it to me. I saw my picture, along with height and weight and general specifications, and a name that wasn't mine. There was lot of stuff that was in Vamp language that I couldn't possibly decipher. But I knew what this was.

"I'm in the International Feeder Database?" The IFD was a vast record of almost ever Feeder in existence, and used by almost all countries...except for Australia, where being a Feeder stripped you of every human right.

Lex nodded. "I paid in full for you- you're entirely my property, which means I can actually change your citizenship. I went ahead and put you in the database. I mean"-he shrugged-"you're not an American until you officially enter the country with me, but after that, everything is set. This"- he pointed to the device on my wrist- "is kind of like a collar. It identifies you as, effectively, a foreigner with full immunity to this country's Feeder regulations. You can safely walk the streets. And you should." He smiled slightly. "It sounds like you've been cooped up for a while."

I had stopped eating again, and just looked at him in shock. Part of me didn't really want to believe it. The creature that was giving me real hope now, real freedom, was the same creature that had snapped my arm in two only hours earlier. I didn't know quite how to reconcile that. Maybe it wasn't worth trying.

"Aww." He patted my head as he took in my expression. "It's all a bit much, isn't it? Keep eating."

I kept eating.

He pulled out a cell phone. "This is yours. Keep it on you at all times. I might text you commands from time to time, like"- he paused and considered for a moment. "'Pick up milk', or 'I want you naked, on the floor on all fours when I get home', and I will fully expect you to comply."

Oh, God.

I had finished the soup, and I actually felt a lot better. The vampire was studying me.

"That said, I'll be out a lot, and I don't really give a shit what you do when I'm out. Entertain yourself." He pulled something else out of the duffel bag and set it on the table. It was a giant wad of cash. My eyes widened.

"This is an advance on the amount that you're entitled to in the Feeder contract, which I will need you to sign"- he picked up the tablet and tapped on a few things, then scrolled, then set it in front of me again. He produced an electronic pen and handed it to me. There was a blank line with a signature indicator beside it.

"Uhh.." I cleared my throat, nervous. "Can I read it first?"

The vampire smiled evilly at me and shook his head. "You can read it after you sign it."

I sighed. Alright, then. I signed my name, then looked at him questioningly. He nodded his head.

"Go ahead."

The contract wasn't terribly long- about six pages, and the last page was in Vamp language, not English. But the English part was straightforward.

I swallowed. "This gives you complete ownership over me." I had a sinking feeling. I had just signed away my independence before I even got to experience it.

He leaned over and flipped to the third page of the contract, pointing something out. "For six weeks. After that, you can choose to renew the contract, or not."

Well, that didn't sound so bad. But I didn't trust him. He had a slight smirk, and something occurred to me.

"You're completely confident that I will renew it."

He looked surprised, then pleased. He stroked down my shoulder.

"You're kind of smart when you're not completely fucked up on drugs." he said conversationally. "That's good, I like a smart slave. They're more fun."

I couldn't tell if he was joking or not. Part of me wanted to humanize him, but most of me was finding that impossible.

"I won't sign away my freedom...not willingly. Not if there's another option." I said it firmly. I needed to know if he actually considered it a possibility. He smiled.

"I promise you, if you choose not to renew your contract, I will let you go."

Well, maybe that was the case. I guess I would have to worry about that when the time came. At least it looked like I had a ticket out of the country, and that was huge. I looked at my hands.

"Thank you." I muttered weakly.

He smiled smugly. "You're welcome."

I studied him uneasily, and I knew by the way he looked at me- like a game, like a toy, that he thought without a doubt that he could break me, that he could turn me into a loyal servant who would chose total subservience to him over a normal, independent life. He's wrong, I thought. Freedom was everything to me. And there was no way in hell I was going to give it up for this violent sociopath. Plus, I could never survive him that long. A year? Fuck that. For now, I would deal with him, because I had to. I was no stranger to violence, or cruelty. I could survive it again as long as I knew freedom lay at the end of the road.

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byzombiegirl28© 6 comments/ 9287 views/ 7 favorites

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