Maurice Ch. 03bykalamazoo707©
What was he doing out there? I wondered as we stared at each other. The second question was who was he? Unlike the vampire that had been with Maurice, I didn't know this man but he seemed to know me. I made a decision, I don't care what Annie said or did, I was not leaving this room until it was time to go home and once there, I was never setting foot in this city again.
I backed away from the window and went back to bed. Annie was snoring softly and then began to talk in her sleep. I lay on my bed and listened to her talk. She mentioned something about my parents and the Lannisters. The Lannisters were the people that my mother worked for, the ones that paid for the vacation that we took all those years before. I didn't know that Annie knew the Lannisters but maybe she had just heard us talking about them.
The Lannisters were really nice people, a little eccentric but I liked them. As a matter of fact, when mom and dad died, they took care of all of the funeral expenses and paid all of our college tuitions. What was eccentric about them? Well for one, my mother had to work in the evenings because.... I don't know why. She just did and the times that I went with her to help her clean, I never saw them.... Saw them what? I never saw them.... Just when I thought that I was going to remember, the thought was gone and my head throbbed so bad I thought that I was going to vomit.
What do I remember about them? That they had a son named.....oh fuck what was his name? He was my age and very cute with the most beautiful gray eyes. I had a crush on him but he never looked twice at me... Micah! That was it, Micah Lannister. I hadn't thought about him in years, I hadn't even thought about the Lannisters until now, isn't that odd? I mean my mother and then my father worked for these people, and they made sure that we were taken care of after my parent's died so I should have thought about them right? Right?
Unable to resist, I got up and looked out of the window, the man if that's what he was with the green eyes was gone. I hugged myself as a chill shook me, somehow I knew that I was in some deep shit and my survival depended on me remembering what happened in 1989.
Regina's birthday was in four days. Whatever was going on I had only until then to figure it out. The next task that I would give to Olivia would be to research Regina's family and that included Cousin Annie. Something wasn't quite right with her, I didn't suspect of her doing anything to intentionally harm Regina but something just wasn't right.
I left a note for Olivia on the kitchen counter and went out again. Maybe I would get lucky and find someone or something willing to talk to me. The big question was this, what happened to her brothers? Do you want to know what I really think? I think that they've been turned. By who and why I don't know. Are they still here? I don't know that either. If they had been turned, that would be one explanation for the weekly phone calls that Regina received and why they never gave her a location.
Since it is so late, I opted to vanish and fly from place to place. The first place I go to is Regina's hotel, I appear just down the block from where the hotel is and see that the hotel is being watched by .... What the fuck? That's Gremlin! What's that green eyed son of a bitch doing here? The last time I heard anything about him was three hundred years ago. Who is he? He's the worst kind of monster and killer, he would be what you would call an assassin. But who was he going to assassinate? Regina? Maybe but if that were true he could have killed her on her first night here. So who hired him and who was his target? Me? Possibly but doubtful. From time to time Gremlin has offered his services as a body guard, was he here to protect as opposed to harming Regina? I didn't get the chance to ask because as soon as he sensed me, he was gone.
I looked up hoping to catch sight of Regina but was disappointed. "Stay in that room." I murmured as I went to the ally where I killed Baron. When I got there, two vampires were ready to feed on a hapless tourist. The frightening thing was that the man was fully awake and conscious; the bastards weren't even going to make him comfortable. They were thriving on his fear holding to the belief that fear made the blood taste sweeter. I don't know if it does or not nor do I care but to have a victim suffer is appalling and it is something that I will not allow under any circumstances.
When the man saw me, his fear grew, with a look; I calmed him and then looked at the two vampires that held him captive.
"Let the human go." I said simply.
They did the same thing that Baron did; they laughed and proceeded to ignore me. One of them snatched the human by the head and exposed his neck.
"Fucker." I said calmly, "let the nice human go."
That got their attention.
"Fucker? Did stumpy just call me a fucker?" he asked his companion as he tossed the man to the ground.
The human male wasted no time in getting to his feet and running off as fast as he could go. I could only hope that he made it to his hotel safely. Little did I know that saving his life was going to be to my advantage-more about him later. Anyway, two very angry vampires approached me thinking that I was going to run.
"Oh look, the little one isn't afraid to die." One of them said grinning at me.
The other one stopped short, "Jasper stop!" he hissed.
"Yes Jasper." I said. "Please stop."
Jasper didn't listen; he approached me until he was an arms length away.
"Damn it Jasper stop!" the other vampire said, he knew who I was.
"What in the fuck is your problem? He's nothing!" Jasper said angrily.
"He's the one who killed Baron!"
"This?" Jasper sneered. "It had to be dumb luck!"
"Jasper, he is of Comte Saint Germaine's line! Leave him be!"
"This midget cannot be a relative to Germaine! Look at him!" Jasper replied but there was hesitancy in his voice as he looked at me.
"He can kill you without touching you.... He's ...."
He never finished his sentence; he took off leaving Jasper alone with me.
"I don't believe you." Jasper said recovering his courage.
"I really don't give a fuck." I replied shrugging my shoulders. "But you should listen to your friend." I added with a smile.
Why is it that people don't listen to me? I mean I did warn him as did his friend but still he came at me. As soon as he touched me, he screamed in pain.
"Son of a mother fucking bitch!" he screamed as smoke rose from his hands.
"Would you care to try again?" I asked still not moving.
The vampire didn't reply but took off down the alley without looking back.
"I'll be damned." a voice from behind me said.
I turned around to see who had spoken, my eyes widened when I saw it was the human male whose life I had just saved. What was he doing back here?
"That was so.... Intense!" he gushed as he rushed forward toward me stopping only when he saw my eyes flash at him. "I couldn't leave you here alone to face those two but I guess you didn't really need any help did you?" he asked. When I didn't reply he kept talking.
"My name is Edgar Allen Poe Long, yeah I know." he said when he saw my raised eyebrows. "My parents were big fans of his, wrote their thesis on him but anyway, thanks for saving my ass."
"Go home Edgar Allen or whatever the fuck your name is and forget what you saw tonight." I said and turned to walk away.
He stood right where he was and began to follow me like a puppy that had no place to go.
"Hey is what he said true? You're related to Saint Germaine?" he called to me.
I ignored him and kept walking until he reached out and touched me. Before he knew what was happening, I had him against the wall of a building, my fangs bared, and my face inches from his.
"Leave me the fuck alone!" I hissed and dropped him to the ground. I could hear him sputtering and getting up to his feet but he kept talking. I was beginning to wish that I had let the two vampires have him for dinner. I stopped walking and turned around to face him. "What part of leave me the fuck alone don't you understand?" I snapped making him jump. "This is your last chance to go away alive." I told him as I walked toward him. This time he walked away but looked back with that "take me with you look."
I made sure that he was gone before I vanished from where I stood and to behind the casino. This was another popular spot for nabbing unsuspecting tourists. When I got there, a demon had a human female backed against the wall. It seemed tonight was my night for playing the rescuer. The woman saw me first, relief showed in her eyes as she silently begged me to help her.
"Excuse me but I don't believe that the lady wants to participate." I said.
The demon turned around but kept his hold on the woman.
"Maurice Delgado! I heard that you were in these parts." he said with a grin. "Word spreads fast." He said answering my unspoken question. He turned to the terrified human woman and kissed her on the cheek, he had just marked her for later and I wouldn't be able to save her a second time. "Go on love, I'll catch you later." He said with what appeared to be a sincere smile. Maybe he wouldn't hurt her-too badly anyway.
When the woman was gone, no doubt headed to the first church she saw that was open or to her hotel room to start reading the Gideon bible in the nightstand, the demon turned to me.
"So what brings you to this part of the city?" he asked amiably.
"You have me at a disadvantage." I said. "Who are you?"
"No one special." he replied.
I didn't believe that and I told him so. His response was to act hurt, he clapped his hand over his heart in mock distress before he finally answered me.
"My name is leg...."
"Cut the my name is legion bull shit! I snapped. "And give me your fucking name!"
"Temper, temper." he drawled petulantly. "But fine, my name is Arthur...'
"Arthur? Really?" I asked laughing.
"What kind of name is Maurice for a vampire?" he shot back clearly miffed that I found his name amusing. It's a sissy name." he added.
"Maybe but I happen to like it." I replied. "Were you here in 1989?" I asked.
"I was here, why do you want to know?"
"What do you know about the abduction of two human males from the Royal Sonesta?" I asked.
"That's old news." he replied.
Finally, someone who was willing to talk to me. "Tell me." I urged.
Arthur looked around and then spoke in hushed tones. The fact that he was even talking to me told me a couple of things. One, Arthur wasn't a minor demon but one of note and two he liked feeling important.
"The way I heard it," he whispered "was that taking the human males was a mistake. They weren't supposed to be in that room but somehow the rooms got switched."
"What room was they supposed to be in?" I asked.
"The one next door, 416 or 415 I can't remember but the one that they were supposed to be in was the safe room as well as the room that their parents were supposed to be in." he replied.
The parents? A whole new crop of questions popped up; did her parents have something to do with this mess? I had to talk to Regina, that's if she would let me anywhere near her. Remember that she knew what I was and that whatever happened to her had something to do with one of us.
"Tell me everything that you know." I told the demon and as it turned out, he knew quite a bit.
"As I'm sure that you're aware, there was a conference that year. Vampires from all over the country were here and even some from overseas, Yamamoto was even here."
"Yamamoto?" I asked shocked. No one had seen him in centuries.
"I know, amazing isn't it?" Arthur asked. "Anyway, it was a big deal that he was here, why he came know one knows and no one had the guts to ask."
I could understand that, one didn't question one such as Yamamoto but I wondered why he came and if Regina had anything to do with it.
"As I was saying, the conference was a big deal that year, supposedly there was some kind of special event planned. A wedding I think who? I don't know but what I do know was that the abduction of the human males shot everything to hell and heads literally rolled but here's what's interesting, at least I think it is; it wasn't Yamamoto that decapitated several high ranking vampires." he said pausing for effect, "it was Frederick Lannister."
Now I'm really intrigued, the Lannister family is one of the most powerful vampire families in North America, with only the king of vampires being more powerful than them. For years there had been rumors about the Lannisters wanting to take over but so far, they had remained just that-rumors but now I was beginning to wonder. It was no secret that the Lannisters and Yamamoto were friends and allies and had been for centuries.
"Who else of note was at the conference?" I asked. He named the usual players and a few that I didn't know. I mentally ran through the list of current players. There was Tremaine, Gremlin, Regina, Annie and there were others of that I was sure but who?
"Who else will talk to me?" I asked.
Arthur laughed, "No one little one, you only have me."
I wasn't exactly overjoyed at the prospect but as he said, he would be the only one who would talk to me.
"Where can I find you?" I asked.
"Right here but not for the next few nights, I think I'm in love." he said laughing and then he was gone.
Annie woke up in a much better mood and ordered breakfast. While we waited I asked her about the Lannisters and how she knew about them.
"I don't know, you must have talked about them or something." she replied.
"You've never met them?" I asked.
"No, I don't think so." she replied. "I know that they took care of you guys after your mom and dad died. Why?"
"You were talking about them in your sleep." I replied.
"Really? Why would I do that?" she asked as confused as I was. "Wait, I met them once, not the parents but what's his name? Micah."
"And you talked about mom and dad." I added and watched her expression.
"What did I say?"
"Most of it I couldn't understand but you said something about them and the trip." I replied.
I remember telling Annie about the trip, she was so jealous and wanted to come along but my parents told her that she couldn't because.... Damn it! Why couldn't she come? Anyway I promised to buy her a gift but I don't think that I did because Daniel and Edward did their disappearing act and we left.... We left right after they were found- I think. I remember going home and then we moved to the house that was located behind the Lannisters big house. We lived there until both of my parents died a few years later. How did they die? They... I don't..... A car accident! They were hit head on by a drunk driver, I remember now and the funeral was closed casket because they were in such bad shape. I was eighteen at the time and the boys were nineteen and twenty but they weren't at the service, they .... Yes they were. I remember now. They came home long enough for the funeral and left soon afterwards. That was the last time that I can actually remember seeing them or was it?
My head was beginning to pound as I tried to remember when I had last seen my brothers. I couldn't believe that my parent's funeral was the last time that I saw them.
"Annie, when was the last time you saw Danny and Eddie?" I asked.
Annie looked at me like I was nuts, "Two years ago remember? We all went to the Lannisters for dinner and Micah was making goo-goo eyes at you. You don't remember that?" she asked incredulous.
"Oh, sure I remember!" I lied but Micah's name gave me a chill that wasn't because of the air conditioner. I was beginning to understand that whatever happened here had something to do with vampires and I was beginning to question my memories. I don't expect to remember everything that ever happened to me but I wasn't remembering major events like the last time I saw my brothers or things about the people who supported us after mom and dad died. What in the fuck happened here?
I looked over my city and by my city; I'm talking about New Orleans. She is here and has been for the past two days. I haven't personally seen her yet but she is being watched, in four days, she will become my bride as she should have been twenty-two years ago. All was going as planned until the appearance of Maurice Delgado, I wish that I could just have the little bastard killed but I can't. I cannot risk the wrath of Comte Saint Germaine, yes the little fucker is really related to Comte and Comte does not take kindly to his relatives being harmed not that Maurice needs protection. Hell, most of us need protection from him!
Once Maurice appeared, Regina began to try to remember things, but whenever she tried she would experience the most painful headaches. Believe me when I say that it gives me no pleasure to have her in pain but she must not remember, not yet. It is bad enough that she saw and knew what Tremaine was but on the plus side she's afraid of Delgado too. She has also seen Gremlin but contrary to what you might believe, he is there for her protection and not to harm her
Gremlin has been watching her for me and this is how I know about Maurice Delgado. It would have been my fault if Baron had gotten his hands on her so yes, I admit that I am in Delgado's debt for protecting her but that doesn't change the fact that Regina belongs to and with me.
How is that possible? Her mother worked for us and used to bring her to help her clean when there was no school. I was smitten with her from the first time I saw her with her hair in braids with bright yellow barrettes on the ends. I watched her change from a pesky little girl into a very pretty teenager-we are exactly the same age and I mean exactly. We were born on the same day, the same month and the exact same minute to the second, it was predestined that she be mine. Why didn't I claim her before now? I tried, we were to be married at the conference in 1989 but things got royally fucked up when someone took her brothers instead of taking her, something about the rooms being switched. But from that point on, we have planted the memories that we want her to have. For instance, her brothers have never resurfaced but she gets a phone call every week from them. She remembers us but only certain things, she knows what we are she just doesn't remember but she remembers that it was my family who cared for them when her parents died. Did her parents die in a car crash? Maybe. You have to understand that we didn't take those memories to be cruel; we are trying to protect her. From who? Delgado and herself. Can you imagine being told that you are betrothed to a vampire, then your brothers go missing and you saw what happened to them? Yes. She saw what happened and yes, we took those memories away.
Do I know where her brothers are? Yes. Is it really them that call her every week? Yes. Are they now vampire? I'm not going to answer that question, it's not something that you need to know. I do know that she is afraid of me in the same way that she is afraid of Tremaine and he really is bad news but he does have his uses. How do I know all of this? As I said, this is my city but I have to admit that I was ill prepared for Delgado. I knew that he was here and had no problems with it until Regina attracted his attention and now he has claimed her as his.
I can see the writing on the wall, one of us, Delgado or me is going to be dead before these four days are up. Which of us are you choosing to survive?
Olivia has left another file on my desk, this one green. It contained information about Regina and her family including their financial records. I started with those, you can sometimes tell a lot about people by their spending habits. What struck me is this, while Regina's family wasn't poverty level, they were struggling. That meant that there was no way that they could have afforded a two week vacation much less stayed at the Royal Sonesta.