tagNonHumanRaven Walks Ch. 20

Raven Walks Ch. 20


Chapter Twenty: Argos

When Damien opened his eyes that evening he found her sitting in the bay window seat, staring out into the night, and sharpening a wooden stake.

Despite his alarm, he sat up from his bed slowly. "Rambo," he quipped. "We meet again."

She simply kept whittling away the sharpened tip of the stake. "I'm not here to hurt you," she assured him quietly. "And the name is Ginger."

He swung his legs over the side of his satin covered bed. "Well then, Ginger, welcome to my home. Might I ask why you're here?"

"Because it's a place no one will look for me," she informed without even looking his directly. "I needed a vampire older and stronger than Raven to throw off his radar, but one who wasn't anywhere close to the club." She turned her green eyes on him then. "You're the only candidate that fit."

"Ah," he said as he nodded. He slid out of bed and came to join her at the window. "And why don't you want Raven to know where you are?"

She blew the dust from the stake. "Because he'll try to convince me not to go after the Creature by myself."

She sleeved the stake and then stood to face Damien, who studied her with a thoughtful gaze. "And you think that little piece of wood is going to kill that thing?"

She shrugged. "It might slow him down at least."

She turned to walk away but his voice stopped her. "You are Abigail's sister."

Without turning around she whispered, "Not anymore," and left the room.

At Sebastian's club, Hunter faced off with the older, wiser vampire with an angry stare. "Don't lie to me, you filthy blood sucker. I know she's here!"

Sebastian just smiled. "For your information I do not suck blood. So that's two counts where you're wrong."

Raven entered the club behind Hunter just as he advanced on Sebastian. "Enough," Raven warned. "Sebastian doesn't know where Ginger is anymore than you do."

Hunter swirled around. "And how do you know that?"

"Because I know why she left," Raven pointed out. "And she'd never hide anywhere that you could find her."

Raven brushed past both of them to head toward the bar. Hunter followed. "You know she's not safe out there," he said -- but Raven appeared nonplussed.

"That begs the assumption that they are safe anywhere."

"Who are they?" Sebastian asked as he walked around the bar. "What's going on?"

"The Creature," Raven explained. "It's after those I possess. To punish me."

"The only thing it does right," Hunter growled as he grabbed a glass of whiskey from the bar.

"Is that what you think?" Raven asked him. "At least I leave them alive."

"Alive but damaged. Like Abigail."

"Ah, yes. Abigail. And you did your part to save her, didn't you?"

Hunter glared at him. "For your information, I love Abigail."

"As much as Ginger?" Raven wanted to know. "Is that why she ran off to face this Creature on her own? Curious as how you didn't see fit to save her."

Hunter was off the bar stool in a second, grabbing Raven's jacket and bringing them nose to nose. "I already saved her from the likes of you before."

Raven just smiled as he remembered Ginger's vampire lover whom she reminisced about just the night before. "Or maybe you didn't save her at all," he mused, "Maybe you just postponed the inevitable. And that's why you're so scared she left."

Hunter released him in impotent anger. Deep down he knew that Raven spoke the truth.

Raven straightened his jacket and then drank from the bottle of water Sebastian had provided. "Maybe if you calm down and stop treating me like the enemy, we can actually save her now."

"What's in it for you?" asked Hunter suspiciously.

Raven was still figuring that out. "Nothing else to do on a Friday night," he quipped.

Sebastian poured his own drink. "So what does this Creature have against you?" he asked Raven.

"Not sure," he sighed. "I've been around a long time, I'm sure I made some enemies along the way."

"Think back to Greece," Hunter suggested. "That's where this Creature began his bloody journey."

Raven took a deep breath. "Greece is where I turned Constantine all those years ago. He was terminally ill and had fallen in love with his brother's wife." He glanced at Hunter and saw the remark had hit home. "Constantine decided he wanted to live with her forever in a strong, immortal body. When he found out I was a vampire, he begged for me to turn him."

Sebastian nodded. He'd heard this story before on the many nights he had counseled Raven on how to deal with his rogue protege.

"Problem was, Nina was so distraught by his death she decided to raise him from the dead herself. But she didn't come to me for that. She went to a man named Argos, a man the village suspected of being a warlock."

Hunter had to fight the urge to roll his eyes. First vampires. Now witches. What was next? A couple of werewolves and a killer Leprechaun?

"Turns out Constantine wasn't the only one who loved fair Nina, or wanted her for his own. Argos gave her some spells he never expected to work, and thought maybe she'd come back to him as a consolation prize. The cemetery gatekeeper found her at Constantine's grave with all the spells and offerings and so he alerted the town. She was burned at the stake by morning." Off of Hunter's look, "It was a superstitious kind of time. Kill first and ask questions later." He took a breath and continued. "Needless to say I took Constantine and fled before his brother Demetri, a known hunter, would be forced to destroy him."

"And never told him about Argos," Sebastian supplied, "because he knew that Constantine would go back to Greece for his vengeance."

"And that would be a mistake?" Hunter asked.

Both vampires nodded. "Argos was an old warlock, centuries older than me. With his advanced age and his advanced knowledge of witchcraft, the only way to survive him would have been to turn him into a vampire like me. As his master, killing me would have meant killing himself."

Sebastian sipped his drink. "But never the two shall meet," he said. "A mutant such as that would be a plague on the planet with no allegiance to either cursed side of himself."

Hunter's eyes widened. "So you think this Creature is Argos?" he deduced.

Raven took another drink of his water. "It's certainly possible. After I took Constantine and left Greece I heard that the town figured out that both of us were vampires. Maybe he figured out what had happened and blames me for Nina's death, not knowing that Constantine had done it to be with her forever."

"But how would he have turned into a vampire?" Hunter asked, confused.

"Not sure," Raven told him. "Any number of scenarios apply. If he was tracking me down by my victims, he might have found one of our victims who converted him along the way."

Hunter took a moment to let it all sink in.

"So you see, we have to find Ginger before she tries to face this thing on her own. If she's attacking it as a vampire, she is going into the battle half prepared."

"And Abi?" Hunter finally asked.

"She's safe with Constantine," Raven told him. "If this creature is Argos, he is not attacking or going after Constantine's conquests, only mine."

"That's not necessarily true," Sebastian pointed out.

"What do you mean?"

"All the victims this thing has targeted are people who have been the obsession of both of you. It attacked Abigail in an alley after Constantine had brought her to the bar. It killed my Sonja, after both of you had taken her in the back room. It went after Lillith, who has known you both in the carnal sense."

Hunter and Raven shared a scared glance. "That means that Abigail, not Ginger, is the one he will go after," Hunter decided.

Both he and Raven bolted for the door.

Abigail floated somewhere between a dream and reality, heaven and hell. She felt her body drift along on the coolest breeze as clouds caressed her skin as she drifted by. Her body tingled all over, as the most powerful orgasm of her entire existence slowly ebbed from her body and carried her gently back to earth.

As her eyelids fluttered open she realized she still lay on top of the satin bed covers, now soaked with sweat and blood. She drug herself up into a sitting position, so weak from the blood loss but still, inexplicably, alive. She glanced down at the black and blue marks around the puncture wounds in her groin. He had obviously meant to take her life but had stopped short for some reason.

"Constantine," she called out for him in a hoarse voice.

"Constantine is unavailable," a raspy voice said in return.

Abigail looked up to find the Creature standing over her, paper thin skin stretched over ancient bones and remnants of muscle. It wore tattered old clothing that hung from its frame like a hanger. Its eyes glowed red like hot coals. She tried to scream but was way too weak, which only made the Creature laugh at her. "Save your strength," it told her. "You will need it."

A groan came from another part of the room and Abi turned to find Constantine tied up in a chair, blood on his head where he had been struck -- probably while feeding on Abi.

She had been too near death to notice.

"Abi," he mumbled as he tried to gather his wits.

The Creature went over to where he had Constantine bound. "Yes, Abi," he said through yellowed teeth and long fangs. "Not as pretty as Nina, but she'll have to do."

Constantine's eyes widened. "Who the hell are you?"

"You'll see," the Creature promised.

He tore the silk sheet into strips with his bony fingers and before Abi could find her strength to dart away he was pinning her to the bed and tying her wrists to the headboard of the bed. "Please, no," she begged.

The Creature merely laughed as he tugged the knots securely. "What's the matter, human? I thought you had a taste for vampires."

She sobbed quietly as she shook her head. "Please, I beg you..."

"Yes," the Creature assured. "You will."

"You touch her and I will kill you!" Constantine promised as he struggled against the restraints that had him bound. It was simple rope, he realized. Why couldn't he break free?

"You could try," the Creature told him. "But you would fail."

Abi was crying in earnest when the Creature bound her feet, one to each foot post. She laid spread eagle, naked and vulnerable for this despicable creature and the only person who could save her was strapped to a chair.

The Creature ran a fingernail from its claw of a hand along her skin from her shoulder down over her breasts, her stomach and then between her legs. She struggled against the silk ties but still was robbed of all strength from Constantine's feeding.

"Why do you fight?" the Creature asked. "I watched you allow this monster to touch you, to kiss you, to taste you." He ran a tongue over sharp teeth.

She screamed as he drew closer to her. "No! Please! God, no!"

"God?" he mocked. "I am your god now." He stood at the foot of the bed and looked at her spread out before him. "But I understand your reluctance to fuck a real vampire. You think there's something more acceptable when we wear a human suit."

He walked over to where Constantine fought against the ropes that bound him. "You want someone who looks like a man but fucks like a god. Invincible. At least...almost," he amended as he dove into Constantine's neck.

The younger vampire fought and struggled under the powerful jaws of the Creature as it drained him of all the blood he'd taken from Abigail. She watched in horror as Constantine gradually slumped, unconscious in the chair.

She stopped screaming as she watched the Creature transform right in front of her. Muscle and fat filled out under skin, as blood brought life to his ancient veins. Skin spread out and covered gaps over bone, muscle and flesh that seemed to grow younger and more alive by the second. His gray hair grew out into a dark brown mane that cascaded in waves over his now flesh and bones shoulders.

His eyes went from red to brown, and his face turned youthful and even beautiful -- like a statue of a Greek god. His voice deepened and turned to silk as he gave her a smile full of white even teeth except for two prominent fangs. "Is this better?" he asked as he approached her again.

He removed his clothing as he knelt at the edge of the bed, his cock rigid as it flung free from the fabric that held it bound, a silent statement of intent on what he fully intended to do to her.

Despite his less frightening appearance, she still shook her head and struggled against her restraints as he moved closer. "No, please!"

He just laughed held himself over her. "Don't worry, darling," he crooned. "It will all be over soon." He bent down for a hard kiss against unwilling lips.

"Get away from her, Argos!" a male voice bellowed from the other side of the room.

Instead of being fearful, the Creature just smiled as he turned to find Raven standing there with Hunter in the doorway.

"How cute," he mocked without moving a hair. "The vampire and the hunter come to save the damsel in distress."

"Hunter!" Abi cried and tried to scoot away as the Creature used his knees to spread her legs wide. She screamed as he tried to impale her with his cock with a deliberate, forceful stroke.

Hunter growled as he flew across the room and tried to tackle the Creature from where he had mounted Abi. He broke their embrace, which made Argos turn on him with angry red eyes. With a roar he reached back and swung at Hunter, his punch sending him across the room and against the other wall. Hunter slid down to the floor in a heap.

His eyes still glowed red as he resumed his position over Abi. "Where were we?"

"No where," Raven informed, holding a bottle of water in his hand.

Argos just laughed. "You think that will work on me?"

Raven just shrugged. "Worth a shot," he said and then flung the contents of the water onto Argos. His renewed skin burned like acid under Hunter's and Ginger's "Vampire-b-Gone". He howled with pain as he stumbled off the bed and away from where Abi sobbed uncontrollably.

"You are no match for me, Raven Crowe," Argos vowed.

"We'll see about that," Raven told him as he grabbed another bottle of water from the backpack he held..

Argos just smiled, half of his face exposed to the bone by the holy water. He turned to Abigail. "Till we meet again." He glanced back at Raven. "Because we will."

And then he exploded in a bloody red mist and was gone.

Raven ran to the bed and gently untied Abi, but she was far too traumatized to do anything but weep. Her body was sore, weak... invaded. She could still feel the Creature's claws as they roamed over her like she belonged to him.

This had been far too close a call. She had been attacked in the place they felt was safe, with the people meant to protect her.

Everything had changed, and it seemed no one could save her the fate to roam the road of death where Raven walks.

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