The Visit (fiction/repost)

The Visit

“You may come in.” said the voice behind the door.

Melissa opened the door and walked into the room. The door closed behind her and shut with an odd click. She was now in the doctor’s office. In front of her beyond the chair was a large heavy desk made of oak or possibly walnut, Melissa really had no idea. Seated behind the desk was a man in his 50s, Melissa presumed, with short grey hair and who looked slightly portly. He was wearing a dark suit with a blue tie and was writing something down when she entered. He looked up briefly at her and then continued writing.

“You are Melissa Adamson?” he asked her in his loud authoritative voice.

“Yes I am” Melissa confirmed. He looked up at her again and this time looked her over for sometime as if he was checking for something. “Thanks for seeing me so late.”

“So what brings you here?” he asked her. Melissa sat down on the chair in front of the desk. She didn’t know where to begin. She flicked the dark hair out of her eyes.

“I’ve been feeling out of sorts lately.” she said to him.

“What do you mean by out of sorts?”

“Well I can’t keep any food down, but I feel so hungry all the time. Also, I can’t sleep at night and instead fall asleep during daytime. If I ever go out in the daylight I get very nasty sunburn. My skin is paler than usual. I wonder if I’m anemic” she told him. The doctor nodded his head making hmm noises as he continued writing things down. He then looked up at her.

“How long has this been happening?” he queried.

“About a couple of days.” she replied.

“Did you notice anything before this?”

“Well I did wake up with a nasty pain in the right side of my neck for a few weeks. I seem to have been bitten by something. I think maybe it was bedbugs or maybe something like that, but the odd thing is that I don’t think I’ve been bitten since I fell ill. I did seem to sleep for a few days before I woke up feeling like this.” she told him. He sat back in his leather chair and took a long look at her.

“Have you had any odd cravings lately for any particular food or drink?”

“Well I ended up eating some raw steak yesterday and I…” she didn’t really want to tell him what she had been craving. It was too weird. He thoughtfully nodded his head and began writing something down again on his notepad.

“Any other odd symptoms?” he asked.

“Well all my senses seem to be heightened. I can see a lot better in the dark now, and I can hear people’s hearts beating and hear their blood flowing in their veins and arteries.” When she said the word “blood” she could feel the cravings again, but she quickly continued on… “Also it isn’t a symptom, but dogs seem to be barking at me a lot now and quite viciously, and cats won’t go near me at all. Maybe they can smell something’s wrong with me.” The doctor briefly smiled, but then resumed his thoughtful expression. He got up from his chair and walked round the desk to her.

“I thought I would listen to your heart. Take a deep breath.” he said as he took his stethoscope from around his neck and put on some rubber gloves. When he placed it against her chest it wasn’t as cold as she thought it would be, though she was feeling it through her t-shirt. The doctor went hmm again. He touched her pale arm “You’re very cold.”

“Yes I can’t seem to get warm these days either.” she said laughing nervously. Saying it all out loud made her realise she must really be ill. The doctor grabbed a tongue depressor from his desk and placed it in her open mouth. He peered into her seeming to check her upper teeth at the same time. She could hear his heart beating slow and steady. He then threw the tongue depressor into the bin and walked back around his desk while removing the rubber gloves. He sat down and looked at her.

“I’m afraid you have a case of vampirism.” he said to her.

“Vampirism?” she repeated in an alarmed voice. “Are you serious?”

“Yes vampirism.” he confirmed. “Obviously a vampire was feeding on you the past few weeks, hence the sore neck. Somehow, whether by intent or accident, some of their blood got into you, which would have been around the same time they obviously drained you of enough blood to kill you. Obviously you must have died, but due to having their blood in your system meant that you regained consciousness as an undead entity.” Melissa sat there with her mouth open in shock. She didn’t know what to say. Maybe the doctor was insane?

“So is there anything I can do about it?” she asked slowly.

“Well thankfully there is a cure.” he proclaimed. Melissa gave a sigh of relief. He opened a drawer in his desk and produced a wooden stake. “All I have to do is insert this into your heart with a certain degree of force and then remove your head and you’ll no longer be a vampire.”

“But won’t that kill me?” she asked alarmed. The doctor looked at her blankly.

“Well yes. You are an abomination now. You have to die.” he said as he stood up.

Melissa then also abruptly stood up and quickly ran to the door, only to find that it was locked. She looked around to see the doctor was quickly advancing on her with the stake in his right hand. She was so hungry now and could hear the blood gurgling through his body as his heart-rate increased.

She turned to face him with her fangs out for the first time. This time she would feed and her hunger would finally be sated…

Joanne Fisher

This was the first piece of fiction I ever published on this blog. Up till then I had published articles, poems, and recipes. I remember feeling nervous as hell when I published this, as it was the first fiction I ever had published online and I wasn’t sure if people were going to like it. Thankfully they did 🙂

I did re-edit this piece as it needed some reworking.

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©️2020 Joanne Fisher

The House Next Door (fiction)

The House Next Door

“My new neighbour seems to be asleep all day and awake all night.” Rose told Nicole.

“Maybe she’s a writer, or a sex worker.” Nicole replied.

“Sometimes I’ve noticed people visit her and they never seem to come back out again.” Rose told her.

“A sex worker then. Just because you haven’t seen any visitors leave, it doesn’t mean they don’t.” Nicole responded. “Anyway, you’re obviously spending way too much time observing her.”

“She intrigues me.” Rose admitted.

“Sounds more like an obsession to me. Be careful or you’ll end up becoming one of those nosy neighbours everyone despises.” Nicole warned her. Rose shrugged her shoulders and looked away.

After Nicole had left, Rose looked out the window at the house next door. It was an old wooden house which had white paint that was slowly peeling off. It was now early evening and she could see her neighbour close her front door and walk down the steps. She looked both ways and then walked off into the night. A few minutes later Rose left her house and went next door. She walked along the side of the house trying to peer through the windows, but the curtains prevented her from seeing into the rooms. She looked over the fence into the back garden and saw dead flowers, overgrown weeds and long grass. Clearly her new neighbour was no gardener. She tried opening the back gate but it was locked with a strong padlock. She walked back to her house feeling defeated.

A few days later Rose was walking back home. It was getting dark and she saw her neighbour standing outside as though she was waiting for someone. As she walked past her neighbour smiled at her.

“Do you live next door?” her neighbour suddenly asked. Rose stopped and looked at her. She was taller than her and had long brown hair and wore a long black coat and dark pants.

“Yes. My name is Rose.” she answered holding out her hand. The woman smiled and took her hand in hers. It felt cold to Rose.

“My name is Amber.” she replied. “Do you want to come in for a coffee?” Taken aback, Rose nodded. Now she would finally see inside her house.

“Yes that would be wonderful.” Rose replied. Amber smiled and walked up the steps. She opened the door and motioned for Rose to enter. Rose crossed the threshold and heard Amber follow behind her. Amber then closed the door behind them. It was now pitch dark and Rose couldn’t see a thing in front of her. The air smelt musty. Her heart began to beat wildly.

“Keep walking.” Amber said softly beside her.

“I can’t see a thing. Can you turn a light on please?” Rose asked beginning to panic.

“Just move forward. Put one foot in front of the other.” Amber softly whispered into Rose’s ear. Her breath felt cold. Rose could feel Amber walking silently behind her, like a jaguar that was stalking it’s prey. Rose came to end of the hallway. All she could feel was a wall in front of her.

“I can’t find the door.” Rose told her. She could feel Amber right behind her now. Her cold breath was on her neck.

“I know you’ve been watching me. Keeping an eye on my activities and snooping around my house.” Amber whispered into her ear. Rose’s heart began to beat even faster than it had been.

“I’m sorry.” Rose replied. “I was just curious about you.” Amber laughed. It was a laugh that was devoid of any joy or mirth. She felt Amber move to her right and suddenly a door opened and a blinding light streamed in.

Rose staggered through to find she was in the kitchen. Amber followed her in and closed the door behind them. She removed her coat and threw it over a chair. Rose turned to face her, but was then unexpectedly pushed to the ground. She looked up at Amber standing over her. Amber’s eyes were now black and long fangs protruded from her mouth.

“You’re going to pay for all your meddling and nosiness.” Amber said looking down on her. As terrified as Rose was, she also felt a strange twinge of desire coursing through her body, as though this is what she had wanted all along…

Joanne Fisher


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©️2020 Joanne Fisher

Carmilla by Joseph Sheridan Le Fanu Review

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I don’t normally write reviews, but I’m in the midst of a dark depression and can’t seem to write any fiction right now. I can’t usually afford books anymore, but luckily Carmilla was only $1 on Google’s Play Books and that’s the sort of price that works for me at the moment… Be warned this review will be full of spoilers.

Carmilla is a gothic novella that was first published in 1872, around 25 years before Bram Stoker’s novel Dracula was published. It has been said that Carmilla was an important influence on Stoker when he was writing Dracula, as well as Le Fanu’s other works. Carmilla, the story’s antagonist, is a vampire and has designs on the story’s narrator. You could say there is quite a strong lesbian undercurrent to this work.

The story is written as a personal memoir by the story’s main character, Louise. During the book, she and her father live in a castle on a small estate that her father has acquired in Styria (located in the south-east of Austria). Laura describes the castle as having a moat and a single drawbridge and being surrounded by forest and being miles away from any other settlement. Honestly upon reading that I just wanted to move in there immediately. I mean if that place exists, can I live there? Please? I can live with the vampire issues they seem to have.

One evening they are outside and witness a carriage accident not far from the estate. A middle-aged woman and her daughter Carmilla are in the carriage. Carmilla is unconscious and Laura’s father agrees to let Carmilla stay at their castle while her mother continues on an important errand and promises to be back in three months time for her. I immediately thought this was a convenient way to get Carmilla to stay at the castle, like it was part of a routine or scam, more about that later.

Upon Carmilla staying at the castle many young women in the surrounding area start getting sick and dying. I would have been suspicious about that from the outset, but the narrator nor her father seem to connect the dots in time.  She also forms a close relationship to Laura, who seems to be both attracted and repelled by her at the same time. Towards the end of the story, Carmilla starts turning her vampiric attention towards Laura (presumably she’s run out of other young women in the area to feed on) and you do get a sense from Laura that she is gradually getting weaker and knows she is facing death.

Upon a trip to the ruins of Karnstein, it is revealed that Carmilla is actually Mircalla, Countess of Karnstein (Carmilla being an anagram of Mircalla) and that she has done this sort of thing before, notably to a friend of Laura’s father, General Spielsdorf. He had also let Carmilla stay at his residence, though she had the name Millarca at the time (another anagram). His niece, became good friends with Millarca, and slowly died. He gives an account of his experience to Laura and her father on their way to Karnstein, and they finally notice how similar his story is to theirs regarding Carmilla. What happens at Karnstein I will leave to anyone wanting to read this work.

Overall I quite liked the writing style. I enjoyed the vivid descriptions of the castle and its environs, as well as Laura’s life there. I also thought how Carmilla quite deviously got into Laura’s head at times, as well as often arousing sympathy from her, was quite well done. Carmilla came off as quite a subtle predator at times. Whenever Laura was quite ill or scared Carmilla would intentionally mirror those feelings and make it seem like she herself was worse off. She put a lot of effort in trying to appear as human to Laura, though there was the occasional slip. When Carmilla was finally feeding on Laura, Laura’s sense of fatalism and claustrophobia seemed genuine and understandable. It would have been nice to have slightly more overt sexuality in this, given the subject matter, but then again what could you expect from the 1870s.

It’s a short work and can be easily be read in a day. If you like vampire stories or even stories with a tinge of lesbianism to them, then it’s well worth reading this.

 

Four and half blood-soaked fangs out of five.

 

 

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This review ©2020 Joanne Fisher

 

Dumb Vampires 1 (fiction)

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Dumb Vampires

 

part 1

 

Sarah’s parents had gone on a cruise for the summer leaving her at home, which suited her fine. She was free to go out and party with her friends whenever she wanted to now. That was certainly better than going on some lame cruise.

Sarah loved the summer holidays. For the moment she was attending college and this was her sophomore year. As her parents were loaded, she didn’t have to worry about getting a job to help pay tuition costs. Having to work over a summer like this would have totally sucked anyway. She enjoyed being a free spirit and having people lick alcohol off her in bars in the early morning hours. That said, the money her parents had left her was starting to get dangerously low and wasn’t even yet midsummer…

Amy had the brilliant idea that Sarah should rent out the guest room for the rest of the summer. If she had a roommate paying rent, then she could still afford to go out and party whenever she wanted to.

She had only put a few ads out when early one evening there was a knock on the door. She opened it to find a young woman with long blonde hair and very pale skin standing there. The woman wore a leather jacket and tight jeans, and also carried a large bag.

“Apparently you’re looking for a roommate and I need somewhere to stay for a few weeks.” the woman said.

“That’s just great! Come in!” Sarah said over-enthusiastically. The woman briefly looked surprised and then walked over the threshold. “Follow me, I’ll show you the room.” The woman followed her up the stairs and into the guest room.

“This is great.” the woman said .

“It’s not much I’m afraid.”

“That’s okay. I don’t have many things.” the woman said as she placed the bag on top of the bed.

“My name is Sarah, by the way.” She said holding her hand out.

“I’m Freya.” the woman replied. They briefly shook hands. Freya’s hand was very cold.

“That’s an unusual name.” Sarah commented. Freya just shook her shoulders.

“I’ll take the room.” Freya announced. She pulled out a large wad of money which made Sarah gasp and counted out a number of bills and then stashed them in Sarah’s hand. “I’m not sure how much the rent is, but I’m hoping this will cover the first few weeks.”

“Yes that’s fine.” Sarah said as she looked at the hundred dollar bills in her hand. “I can make space for your food in the fridge if you want.”

“That’s okay. I don’t really eat that much. I tend to stay up all night and sleep all day. So all I ask is don’t disturb me during the daytime.” Freya told her. Sarah nodded.

“Same! I’m usually out all night with friends and sleep the day away too. Hey, if you ever want to join my friends and me for drinks one night, feel free.”

“I’ll think about it.” Freya replied, as though she was carefully considering it.

“Is there anything you need?” Sarah asked her. Freya looked around the room.

“No I’m fine.” Freya answered. “I’m going out now, so I guess I’ll see you tomorrow.”

“Okay see you roomie!” Sarah exclaimed with a little too much excitement. Freya briefly smiled and then left the house.

Sarah looked at the fistful of hundred dollar bills. It was definitely party night! She immediately called up her friends and within a short time she had gone as well.

 

*

 

It was late in the afternoon when Sarah awoke the next day. She stumbled to the kitchen and opened the fridge. There was a large plastic bottle sitting there.

“Oh that’s right, I’ve got a roommate now.” she said to herself. Looking inside the bottle she saw it was full of some red liquid. It must be some berry flavoured protein shake thing, she thought, no wonder Freya keeps so thin. Wondering what it tasted like, she took a sip, and then almost immediately spat it out. That was no berry drink! What the hell was that crazy bitch drinking? She turned to see Freya standing in the doorway.

“Sorry…” Sarah said still holding the plastic bottle in her hands. Freya looked at her darkly.

 

to be continued…

 

Joanne Fisher

 

Previous: prologue

 

Sorry it’s taken so long to getting round to writing this. The other parts will probably be coming out sporadically.

 

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©2020 Joanne Fisher

The New Mirror (flash fiction)

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The New Mirror

 

I found a cheap mirror at the local store today and brought it home. I put it up in the bathroom as I thought the room needed to have a mirror. I reflected that it’s rather strange to have two women living in a house together and yet have no mirror anywhere. If I want to look at myself I have to use my compact or a DVD, while Astrid doesn’t seem to care. She always looks good anyway.

Once I heard Astrid finally appear, I showed her the new mirror in the bathroom. She smiled at me. I looked at both of us together in it, but I could only see my own reflection, even though Astrid was standing right behind me…

“Astrid my love?” I asked with a hint of concern in my voice.

“Yes my darling?”

“How come I can’t see you in the mirror?”

“Because I’m a vampire, my sweet.” She replied.

I swung round to face her. She was smiling at me. She opened her mouth and I could see her long sharp fangs. I backed away from her.

“How come I didn’t know this?” I asked as I watched her slowly advance towards me.

“Because I feed on you every night, and then erase your memory. This isn’t even the first mirror you’ve bought.” She picked up the mirror and dropped it on the ground. It shattered into tiny pieces. “Each time I destroy it, and then make you forget.”

“Not this time!” I said as I pushed past her and ran for the front door, but when I got to it she was already there.

“There is nothing you can do, my darling. I’ll erase your memory and you will forget all this happened, and we’ll be happy again.” She said advancing on me purposefully. I backed away from her, until I hit the wall. She came right up to me. Her eyes…

She has the most beautiful eyes.

 

 

Joanne Fisher

 

 

This is a story I wrote a couple of years ago. I decided to revise and republish it.

 

 

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©2020 Joanne Fisher

Dinner (fiction)

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Dinner

 

“So what do you like doing?” I asked her. She shrugged her shoulders and gave me a half-smile. Her dark eyes looked around the restaurant.

“Wandering around in the darkness.” she replied. A strange response, I thought.

“I was meaning things like hobbies.” I explained. She looked at me directly.

“Wandering around in the darkness.” She repeated.

“Okay. So where do you see yourself in five years?” I asked, deciding to move on. She continued looking directly at me.

“Wandering around in the darkness.” she replied with a grim smile. I gave up at this point and sighed. I wondered if this was all some sort of joke for her. It was one of those dates…

We had met on a dating app and arranged to meet each other for real. Her name was Anna, and that was virtually all I knew about her. I suggested we go to a restaurant for a meal. She seemed less interested in that, but eventually agreed, though insisting we meet only once it was dark and go to a particular restaurant that she knew. She also said she preferred the nightlife.

When I had got to the restaurant, Anna was already there. She had long dark hair that was smooth and straight. Her skin was rather pale. She was also short and skinny, and looked much younger than the age of 30, which was the age she had given me. I sat down across from her.

“Hi I’m Nicola.” I said to her. She nodded her head at me and then she looked me over with eyes that looked almost entirely black.

“Have you ever been here?” she asked in a soft voice.

“No I’ve never seen this restaurant before.”

“It is only open when it’s dark, and caters for a wide variety of people.” she informed me mysteriously. I wondered what “wide variety of people” meant, but didn’t ask as I was worried it might end up being something I wish I hadn’t asked about.

I was under the impression we were meeting for a meal, but all she ordered was some red wine. As I was hungry I ordered a rare steak with salad and fries. When it arrived everything was cooked to perfection. I cut into the steak and red juices came oozing out. I began eating and Anna just sat back drinking her wine and regarding me while I quickly ate.

Once I had finished eating, and after her enigmatic answers to my questions, I decided to have another go at finding out more about her. So once the coffee arrived I attempted talking to her one more time.

“So what do you do?” I asked her.

“What do you mean?” she asked frowning.

“Do have a job? Do you have any interests other than wandering around in the dark?”

“I look for people to feed on.” she replied.

“I’m sorry?” I asked, thinking I had misheard her.

“I’m a vampire.” Anna explained.

“A vampire? Really?” I replied disbelievingly. She was definitely having a joke with me.

“Yes.”

“So you’re a vampire looking for a relationship?” I clarified.

“Not really.” she stated.

“If you’re not really looking for a relationship, then why are we having this date?” I was getting tired of meeting people that didn’t really want to commit to anything. It seemed like this was going to be another wasted evening.

“I wanted to meet you.” Anna explained. “I’m wanting to increase the number of people I regularly feed on.”

“Really?” I asked. She was still sticking to the vampire story. Part of me wanted to leave, while another part of me wanted to see if I could still salvage something from this date.

“I have a number of people distributed throughout the city that I regularly feed on. I thought you could be included in that number.” she told me.

“Why would I want that? I mean, what would be in it for me?”

“Nothing.” she stated simply.

“So why would I agree to it?” I put to her. She appraised me again and then began looking at me hungrily.

“You’re not the one that gets to choose.”

 

Joanne Fisher

 

I thought it had been a while since I had written a vampire story…

 

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After doing what seemed like a long image search, I ended up using a picture of Irene who is in the South Korean girl group Red Velvet. Her real name is Bae Joo Hyun. Apart from being a singer with Red Velvet, she is also an actress and television host. I hope she doesn’t mind.

 

©2019 Joanne Fisher

 

My Life In Darkness, part 36 (fiction)

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previous episode

 

My Life In Darkness

 

 

36. My Life In Darkness

 

I woke up. I was lying in Astrid’s bed. I guessed it was daytime as I saw light peeping in through the curtains. I wondered if the previous events had been a dream, but when I tried to move there was a sharp pain in my chest. My chest was covered in a bandage. I remembered being stabbed by Maximilian, and then everything going black. As I tried to sit up, the door to the bedroom opened and in walked Astrid, looking full of life.

“So you’re awake sleepyhead!” She said as she began drawing the curtains.

“What happened?” I asked her.

“When I came to in that crypt I found you lying in a pool of your own blood with the dagger in your chest. I fed you some blood to stabilise you. Luckily there was a Mercedes parked outside which had a first aid kit. I guessed that had belonged to Maximilian. So I bandaged you up and brought you back here. You had lost a lot of blood. Fortunately for you I had some A negative blood stored, so I was able to replace it. The dagger just missed your heart by a hair’s breadth. You were very fortunate.” Astrid informed me.

“What about Maximilian? What happened to him?” I asked.

“He was just a pile of ashes when I awoke. It looked very much like what you did to Cass.”

“In the heat of the moment I ended up setting him on fire.”

“You’ve taken a life now, one that wasn’t a vampire.” She said while looking at me carefully to see my response.

“I know. I didn’t like him, but I was hoping you would be the one that finished him off, not me. I got carried away.” I said in a regretful voice.

“You’ll have that on your conscience for the rest of your life now.” She reminded me.

“I know.”

“Once you’ve taken your first life, it gets easier to take others, but you may find that out. I know from personal experience.” She informed me.

“But I don’t want to kill others.” I answered.

“It looks like you’ve already started down that path.”

I stared out the window. I didn’t want to think about it. Was I going to end up killing more? Would I become like Astrid now? I was unable see the dark path before me, and where it would lead.

“But it all worked out anyway, despite what happened.” I said trying to sit up again. Astrid looked at me darkly and stood at the foot of the bed.

“Don’t believe for a minute that I’m fooled by that.” She stated.

“What do you mean?” I asked, not understanding.

“I know you were attempting to kill me. You just lost your nerve.”

“But we got rid of Maximilian. So it all worked out in the end.” I explained.

“The end justifies the means, you mean to say?” She clarified.

“Well I wouldn’t put it that way.” I told her.

“How would you put it? A cowardly act trying to get rid of me and then failing?” She asked. There was anger and reproachment in her voice.

“I’m sorry. I thought it was for the best. But I realised I couldn’t live without you, so I stopped Maximilian from killing you.”

“Oh, how wonderful of you! I guess I should be grateful for that, but it doesn’t clear you from blame. I will never forgive you.” I looked away from her feeling embarrassed. “I shouldn’t have been in that position to begin with. I was aware you were probably planning to double-cross me, so I played along waiting to see what you would do.”

“Okay, but now we’ve got through it together, maybe we can focus on moving on.” I suggested. Astrid laughed. It was a humourless laugh devoid of mirth or joy.

“I am never going to let you forget this. You had one chance to kill me, and you blew it. You’re stuck with me forever now, and I’m going to make your life a living hell. You may think how I was treating you was bad before, but that will be nothing to what you’re going to face now.” She warned me. “You will long for the days before you tried to kill me.”

I looked at her and the expression on her face, and realised she had lost all respect for me. I was nothing to her now.

“I’m sorry. If there is any way I can make it up to you…” My voice trailed off as I saw her shaking her head at my words.

“There is nothing you can say or do. The Council wants me to keep you alive and under my control. So that’s how it’s going to be. You can no longer leave the house. This means you can no longer work and you will have to give up your apartment. I will keep you drained of blood regularly so your powers will not be able to manifest so strongly, and you won’t be able to pull that trick of disobeying my commands again. I suppose that witch told you how to do that?”

“Yes.” I admitted. “But she was just trying to help. Please don’t harm her!”

“Too late.” She smiled grimly at me. “I’ve already dealt with her for that betrayal.”

“You didn’t have to kill her!” I screamed. Poor Lisette, I thought. She certainly didn’t deserve that.

“It’s not your business to tell me what I can or can”t do. And you will be regularly disciplined from now on. Hopefully that will keep reminding you to obey me at all times.” She stated. “I’ll leave you to mull over this.”

“Surely the Council won’t want you to treat me like this?” I asked her as she began to turn around. She just shrugged.

“As long as you’re alive and under my control they don’t care how I treat you or what living conditions you’re in. Honestly, they would probably prefer it I treat you this way. After all, they consider you a threat.” With that she walked out and closed the door behind her. I was left alone in that room with my thoughts.

This is not a happy story with a happy ending. There is no happy ending here. There are no happy endings. Not in my life anyway. This is the story of my descent into darkness. This was to be my life from now on. Astrid had lost all love and respect for me, and now I was going to be her slave for the rest of my days, however long that was going to be. I was to dwell perpetually in the darkness, continually yearning for the light, but no longer able to feel that light, or warmth, or happiness, ever again.

 

The End.

 

 

I know it’s a dark ending, but that was how it was always going to play out from when I started writing it. There is a possibility of a sequel, where maybe Melissa is able to win back her freedom and seek the Council, but that’s another story for another time.

This is the first time I have completed a longer narrative from beginning to end, and so I’m feeling rather proud of myself with this achievement. Hopefully there will be many more. To be honest, sometimes I could feel the story dragging me down into the darkness with it, so I’m glad it’s finally out of my head, and now I’m free to focus on other projects.

I would like to thank everyone who has stuck with this story and liked and commented on it. I would especially like to thank H.R.R. Gorman for their advice and constant encouragement, which helped me carry on with this.

 

 

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©Joanne Fisher 2019.

My Life In Darkness, part 35 (fiction)

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previous episode

 

My Life In Darkness

 

35. Endgame

 

Maximilian looked down at Astrid lying in her coffin with the dagger sticking out of her chest.

“Good.” He said approvingly.

He walked around the narrow cellar investigating all the torture equipment that Astrid had acquired and then kneeled down to get a closer look at the blood stains on the bare concrete floor.

“It’s fairly horrifying, huh?” I said.

“I wonder how many people have been tortured and killed down here.” He mused.

“I don’t know. I never saw or heard anyone. I’ve only been in here twice before, thankfully.” I informed him.

“So you willingly had sex with her, and also let her bite and torture you?” He said accusingly. “It makes me wonder about you.”

“I didn’t let her torture me. She did that against my will.” I told him.

“So you say. I know people like you.” He replied, as though he had me figured out.

“You know people like me?” I repeated. “What do you mean?”

“Deviants like you who enjoy being whipped, among other things.” He stated.. I wanted to strike him.

“Well I didn’t. The second time I passed out due to the pain. Just because I like other women, it doesn’t mean I’m into being tortured or whipped. Your ideas are bit old fashioned and out of touch with reality.” I informed him.

“Maybe, but it’s all a sickness, isn’t it?”

“That’s just your opinion.” I responded. He raised his eyebrows.

‘We should get down to business.” Seeing I was getting angry towards him, he changed the subject. “The coffin is too heavy for the both of us, so we’re going to have to just carry her body to my car.”

“Can’t we just kill her here?” I asked confused. He looked around.

“No. This place is too full of her power. It will be better to execute her somewhere else away from here. There is a large vault in the cemetery I know of which has a cellar. I think that would be the best place to do it.” He informed me.

“Okay.” I replied. He walked over to the coffin.

“I’ll carry her by the head and you can take her legs.” He ordered.

“Don’t you have others to carry heavy stuff for you?” I asked perplexed.

“No. I long ago learned it was better to work alone. Vampire hunting is a dangerous occupation…”

“You don’t say?” I replied sarcastically.

“I prefer not to risk other people’s lives, other than my own.” He continued, ignoring my remark. “We’ll put her in my car boot. I’ll just go and open it.” He walked up and stairs and disappeared. A short time later he returned. “Shall we go now?”

“Okay.” I replied. There was a sense of foreboding starting to grow in me again. I had a feeling something was going to go wrong.

He picked up her head while I grabbed her long slender legs. We carried Astrid out of her coffin and then slowly up the narrow stairs. Moving her body was awkward, as there wasn’t a lot of room. Eventually we managed to carry her out of the house and then put her in Maximilian’s car boot. He had a white Mercedes. We had to bend her legs so she would fit. She lay there with the continual surprised expression on her face. Maximilian firmly closed the boot. After locking up the house, I got in the car with him, and slowly we drove off for the cemetery. In the back seat were a couple of large bags.

“We may have to get her body into the vault quite stealthily. There might be other people around, and it will look very suspicious if we are seen carrying a body into a vault.” He said.

“You think?”

Fortunately for us, the cemetery was empty of other people when we arrived. Maximilian parked the car the nearest he could get to the vault. Then we got out. He looked around in case there were others around we hadn’t seen. He opened a door to the backseat and unzipped one of the bags and brought out two miner’s helmets. He handed one to me and put the other one on his head. It looked rather comical: a tall gaunt man in his sixties with an expensive looking suit and a yellow miner’s helmet on his head. It was so incongruous.

“It will be dark in there. We will need a light source while we’re carrying Astrid’s body down below.” He explained.

As I put the helmet on he went round to the boot and opened it. There lay Astrid. She looked so vulnerable curled up in the boot like that. Again, Maximilian took her head while I took her legs and we quickly moved towards the door to the vault.  He briefly placed Astrid’s head on the ground while he opened the stone door, and then in we went. When we crossed over the threshold I had flashbacks to when Tony was decapitated in one of the smaller vaults. I looked around, this vault was larger with several stone tombs lining the walls. Concealed behind one of them were some stone steps leading down into the darkness. As we went down the steps we came to a lower level. There were a couple of tombs down here. The air felt musty and closed in.

“Who does this vault belong to?” I asked.

“One of the founding families.” Maximilian answered, as he led the way to a stone table at the end.

We placed Astrid on the table. He then went back up the stairs while I stood watch over her. The dagger was still firmly in her heart. She looked so pale, and would have seemed peaceful, aside from her expression. Maximilian returned holding another large bag and set it down on the floor. First of all he brought out candles from the bag and handed them to me.

“Place these around the room and then light them.” He told me as he also gave me his lighter.

I did as he told and placed the candles at various points, and then lit them. The lighter he had given me was an old tarnished metal one. It looked ancient. Once all the candles were lit, Maximilian took off his helmet and switched the light off, I did the same. He produced some small purple flowers out of the bag, which from their smell I presumed were garlic. He placed them around Astrid’s body. He then brought a large black book which he set down by Astrid’s feet. Lastly, he brought out a large heavy-looking axe. In this light the metal looked like it was black. He placed it above Astrid’s head. He picked up the book that was by Astrid’s feet and opened it.

“I have to make some incantations that will help Astrid’s spirit depart her body. Once that is done, I will hew her head off, and then we will have to bury the head and the body separately.” He informed me.

“Won’t she just turn to ash once she’s killed?” I asked. He shook his head.

“She’s been undead for a long time. The magic that keeps her body together is strong. She will eventually turn to ash, but it will take some time, so in the meantime we bury her remains to deny any possibility she might come back. Even in this state her magic is at work.” He explained.

He began reading out incantations and walking around her body as I stood and watched. I looked at Astrid with her long blonde hair and pale skin and thought about the times we had shared. There were some really bad times, but also good ones. I began thinking about when we first met, before she became controlling, and I found myself missing her. Yes she was quite controlling, but she was also protective of me, and she had made me feel safe. I felt a lurch in my stomach. If she was going to die here that would be it: I would never see her again. She would be gone like everyone else in my life. Like my parents were, like Tony was, like Nicola, and I would be left alone again. I felt myself beginning to sob. I loved her. I still did. Maybe she could change, maybe things could be better between us. Maybe it didn’t have to end this way. I moved up to the table when Maximilian was around the other side, and without warning I found myself pulling the dagger out of her chest.

“You fool! She will wake up and kill us all! Stupid girl!” Maximilian shouted as he quickly came over to me.

“I’m not letting you kill her!’ I shouted back at him.

He tried to grab the dagger from out of my hands. I fought to keep hold of it while he was pulling it from my grasp. As we struggled I could feel the dagger slowly slipping out of my hands. He finally pulled it away from me.

“Fine. Then burn you asshole!” I grabbed hold of him.

He looked at me strangely, and then with complete surprise, as he suddenly caught alight and burst into flames. He screamed.

“This is Astrid making you do this you fool!” He screamed out of the flames.

“You didn’t know I was a sorceress, did you?” I taunted him, ignoring his words.

I kept hold of him and watched him burn. I felt a thud in my chest, and then he fell to the floor burning as my grasp weakened. I looked down and saw the dagger was now in my chest and my top was growing red with blood. I collapsed onto the ground and everything went black…

 

Next episode: My Life In Darkness

 

The final episode has actually been written. I will probably publish it at the usual time next week, unless people want to see it before then…

 

Please donate! 🙂

 

 

©2019 Joanne Fisher

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

My Life In Darkness, part 34 (fiction)

1853

 

previous episode

My Life In Darkness

 

 

34. The Plan

 

“So have you come to a decision?” Maximilian asked with his deep voice.

We were in the courtyard of the cafe again, sitting at the same table. When I sat down a cup of coffee was placed in front of me by a smiling waitress. Maximilian sat there smoking a fat cigar like he did two days ago. He wore sunglasses and a dark suit.

“I want to help you.” I told him.

“Are you definite on this?” He asked.

“Of course I am. I’m tired of her controlling me all the time. She’s locked me in a box with manacles on and even chained me up and whipped me. I can’t go anywhere I want to. I haven’t even seen my own apartment in weeks. She’s marked me as her property. I want my freedom!” I replied vehemently.

“Good.” He answered blowing more smoke in my direction.

“So what can I do?” I asked.

He put his cigar down and then picked up a black suitcase that was next to his chair. He put the suitcase on the table and opened it. He took out what looked to be a bundle of red material and handed it to me. There was something inside the cloth. It felt heavy. He closed the suitcase and then put it back down beside his chair.

“Put it in your lap and slowly unwrap it. Don’t let anyone else see.” He suggested.

I looked around. There were a few people sitting at other tables, but they didn’t seem to notice us. Still, I did as he commanded and slowly unwrapped the red cloth on my lap. Inside there was a long thin dagger. There were runes and symbols etched onto the blade. I could feel a magical energy in it. I looked up at him for clarification.

“What am I supposed to do with this?” I asked.

“I need you to stick that in Astrid Eriksdottir’s heart. Preferably when she’s lying in her coffin. That will immobilise her.”

“Won’t a wooden stake do just as well?” I asked him.

“No, she is an ancient vampire. She would just pull the wooden stake out. We need a powerful magic object like this. Once it is driven into her heart, it will paralyse her.” He explained.

“I don’t think she uses a coffin. She told me she didn’t.”

“All vampires need some time in a coffin that has some soil from their homeland in it. Otherwise what keeps them tied to their undead body can start to unravel. Did you expect her to tell you the truth? It’s when vampires are at their most vulnerable.” He revealed.

“There is a coffin in her basement. It’s the one she locked me in.” I told him.

“That’s probably it. She must use it when you are sleeping or not around.”

“So, I creep into the basement when she’s resting in her coffin and then insert the dagger into her heart?” I clarified.

“Precisely.”

“If I manage to do this, what then?”

“Then you call me.” He stated. “Give me your phone.” He held out his right hand.

Reluctantly, I handed my phone over to him, after unlocking the screen. He took it from me and began entering something into it. After that, he handed the phone back to me. I checked my contacts to see he had entered the name ‘Max’ and added his number.

“This could be very dangerous for me. She might wake up when I’m trying to put the dagger in her, and then kill me.” I informed him. He looked at me grimly while breathing out smoke.

“I guess that will be the risk you have to take.” He admitted. “But think on this, if you don’t try doing it, then you will be her slave for the rest of your life, and vampires are able to keep people alive far longer than their natural life span. So when I say you will be her slave for the rest of your life, that could be a far longer time than you realise. Sometimes you have to take a risk to make a positive change in your life.”

I nodded at his words. It made sense. I wrapped the dagger back up in the cloth and stowed it away in my bag.

“I’ll try to get this done as soon as I can.” I told him.

“Good, but choose the best time, not the most convenient time. Otherwise you risk your life unnecessarily.”

“Okay.”

“Does she trust you at the moment?”

“I think so. We had sex last night.” I admitted. He looked at me distastefully.

“You are fully committed to helping me aren’t you?”

“Of course!” I assured him. “If she’s not expecting me to turn on her, then surely that will help my chances to stake her with the dagger.”

“I would hope so.” He replied.

 

*

 

I went back to work hoping I had pulled off being convincing to him. Once work was finished and I was back at Astrid’s place, I took out the cloth from out of my bag and unwound it to reveal the dagger Maximilian had given me. Astrid picked the dagger up and took a long look at it. I noticed she shuddered slightly when she first touched it.

“So what’s his plan?” She asked.

“He wants me to stab you in the heart with it, and then I call him. Funny thing, he told me you sleep in a coffin, which is when he wants me to stab you with it. Yet I distinctly recall you telling me you didn’t.” I told her. She shrugged her shoulders.

“Okay I have to admit I lied to you. Yes I do occasionally sleep in a coffin. Vampires like me can be very private, and so we don’t like telling people everything about our lives, especially when we’re vulnerable, even to those we are close to.” She admitted while looking at me.

“So what do we do?” I asked her. Astrid paused for a moment as though she was deep in thought.

“Well we could keep the dagger so he can’t use it against other vampires, or we could use it to lay a trap for him.”

“The trouble is if I tell him I’ve staked you, he might be prepared for a double cross. He’s surely got contingencies planned if he comes here and finds you’re not staked. The only way we’re going to get rid of him is by surprising him.” I suggested.

“So what’s your idea?” Astrid asked intrigued.

“You let me stake you. He will come here and see that you’ve got the dagger in you, and when he’s not looking I’ll remove it and you can attack him when he’s unprepared for it. That way any magic or contingencies he might have should be countered.”

“I’d feel better about it if you were able to give some magical support of your own.” Astrid stated.

“Yeah I still can’t seem to get my magic to work on command.” I lied to her. “But you never know, maybe in the heat of the moment my powers might work, like they did with Cass.”

“Let’s hope so.” Astrid replied. “So to clarify, you stake me in my coffin and then contact Maximilian, who then comes round. When he has his back turned you will remove the dagger, and then I get rid of Maximilian.”

“Yes exactly. And I will give what support I can.”

“This better not be a trap to get rid of me.” Astrid said looking at me darkly.

“I’ve already told you I don’t like him. He’s a hater. Despite what’s happened between us, I still love you. I certainly don’t want you to come to harm, especially not to someone like him.” I said to her hoping, again, that I was sounding convincing.

“So do we do it tonight, or wait? What do you reckon?” She asked me, seemingly impressed with my ability to take charge of the situation.

“I think we should wait a couple of days. It will seem suspicious if I call him up tonight. It will seem too quick to him. He comes across as an extremely cautious man.” I informed her.

“Yes, given how long he has been a hunter, and how many he has killed, he would be cautious.” Astrid agreed. “Shall we wait till Saturday morning to set the trap for him?”

“Okay, Saturday morning.” I confirmed.

That night we had sex again. I was mindful that this could be one of the last times our bodies would connect in this way; one of the last times we would share this physical and mental space with one another. Afterwards we cuddled, and I felt guilty about what I planned to do.

Over the next few days a heavy feeling of foreboding grew in my mind. I hoped I could pull this off. This was high stakes gambling, and I wasn’t a gambler. I knew I was putting my life on the line, but if I succeeded I would be free again, even if it meant being alone. But I was prepared for that. Or so I thought.

When Saturday finally came I was incredibly nervous. We had decided to set the trap early Saturday morning, just as dawn came when Astrid would conceivably try to get some rest in her coffin. We walked down the narrow stairs that led to the basement. Astrid opened up the coffin and got in. I held the dagger in my hand.

“A word of warning. When you put the dagger in me you’re going to get one hell of a headache.” Astrid warned as she sat up in her coffin.

“Why?” I asked.

“Because you’re bound to me. If you try to physically harm me you will get a severe pain in your head. I’m sorry, but there is no way around it.” She informed me.

I remembered the pain in my head when I tried to stop her killing Tony, so I guess I understood what I was in for. I walked towards her with the dagger. She lay down in the coffin. As I stood over her and got the dagger ready, she suddenly sat up again.

“Is there a problem?” I asked her.

“It’s not that I don’t trust you, but sticking this dagger in me is going to make me more vulnerable than I would like. I’ve been around for a long time, and I feel like this is too dangerous. I think we need to come up with another plan.” She admitted.

“I think if we’re going to get rid of Maximilian, we’re going to have to take a risk.” I informed her moving the dagger in position.

“Not this way. Do not stab me!” She commanded.

I couldn’t move the dagger towards her. I remembered what Lisette had said about overcoming Astrid’s commands. I imagined there was a barrier around me that Astrid’s command could not penetrate, and that I was separate entity from her that could act freely. As I focused on this, I quickly plunged the dagger straight into Astrid’s heart. As the dagger impaled her, the most unbelievable pain hit my head. I collapsed onto the ground. My head felt like it was splitting apart. When I regained consciousness, the pain was subsiding. I stood up to see Astrid was sitting up in the coffin with the dagger sticking out of her chest. She had a look of surprise frozen on her face. I laid her down in the coffin, and then pulled out my phone to call Maximilian.

 

Next episode: Endgame

 

 

Please donate! 🙂

 

 

©2019 Joanne Fisher

 

 

 

 

 

 

My Life In Darkness, part 33 (fiction)

1853

 

previous episode

 

My Life In Darkness

 

33. Learning Magic

 

“Burn!” I commanded.

I looked at the scrunched up ball of paper in my hand. Nothing happened. So far this afternoon I had spectacularly failed to set anything alight.

“So what happened last time you set something on fire? How were you feeling?” Lisette asked curiously. I looked at her.

“I was feeling a mixture of scared and angry.” I replied. She smiled.

“Would it be safe to say that your powers have only manifested when you felt you were in danger or highly emotional?”

“Yes.” I agreed.

We were both sitting  in the garden at Astrid’s place. It was sunny but not that warm. Lisette was a witch that Astrid had asked to come round to help me with my powers. She had long black hair and pale skin. She was only slightly older than myself. She wore a long red dress with black and purple striped leggings.and black shoes with a long heel. At the moment she looked deep in thought.

“Have you been fed on recently?” She finally asked.

“Not for a few days.” I replied. “Can that affect my powers?”

“Well blood is life. I imagine if you’re fed on regularly it will affect your ability to access your powers. It’s a way sorcerers were kept weak in the past, by constantly draining them. Maybe Astrid is deliberately doing that to you.” She speculated.

I hadn’t thought about that. I thought it was more my lack of focus. I kept on thinking about my meeting with Maximilian yesterday. I still had no idea what to do about it. Do I say yes to him? Do I tell Astrid about him? I was unsure how to proceed.

“I’m not sure if she is doing that on purpose.” I finally responded wanting to give Astrid the benefit of the doubt.

“Hmm… Maybe if you try to remember the emotional state you were in. If you could try to make yourself feel those emotions again, it might help you gain access to your abilities.” She suggested.

I stared at the paper again and concentrated. I tried to remember how I was feeling that night when I turned Cass to fire and ash.

“Burn!” I commanded again to the piece of paper sitting on my palm.

Nothing happened. I sighed heavily.

“It’s just not working. Maybe you should have a go.” I tossed the ball of paper to her.

“I can’t cause paper to go up in flames just like that. It’s not how my powers work.” She told me.

“It doesn’t seem I can either.” I retorted.

“I just don’t think you’re focused enough.” She responded. “I think there’s something else your mind is occupied with.”

Her remark was a little too insightful. She could obviously sense I was grappling with something else.

“How are your powers different from mine?” I asked, changing the subject.

“Witches get their powers from specific times such as phases of the Moon, or incantations and rituals. Sorcerers, on the other hand, channel power sources around them into raw magical energy. It’s why historically a lot of mages never liked sorcerers that much, as it was just too easy for them to power their spells.” Lisette informed me. “It’s also known as jealousy.” She winked at me.

“But why am I a sorceress?” I asked her.

“I’m not a great expert, but I think it’s to do with bloodlines. You may have ancestors who were sorcerers. Those bloodlines can remain dormant for some time and then unexpectedly throw up someone like you. Though you are the first one seen in a long time. It was thought true sorcerers were gone from this world… You also might have some fey blood in you.”

“Fey blood?”

“As in elves or other folk like that.” She told me.

“They exist?” I asked surprised.

“Yes, but there are very few in this world, though there are some portals to Faerie nearby, I do believe.”

My head was spinning. There was more to this world than I had ever guessed. How had I ever not noticed any of this?

“If I’m a powerful sorceress, how come Astrid can command me to do things against my will?” I asked her.

“Because you’re bound to her it makes it easier for her to control you. It also helps if she has your blood in her, or you have her blood in you.”

“She feeds me her blood quite regularly.” I admitted.

“That will be part of the reason then. You are a person of power though, so you can learn how to resist her commands.” She revealed.

“How do I do that?” I asked intrigued.

“If she ever commands you, just become focused on yourself. Be aware that you are separate from her and are free from her influence. Try to imagine there is a barrier around you that Astrid cannot penetrate and that all your actions and decisions are your own. It may take a few attempts, but it could work. Let me know if it doesn’t, and we’ll try some other way.”

“Thanks.” I replied in wonder. She smiled at me.

“Us magical folk need to stick together.” She stated. “I better go. Just try to keep practicing your powers. Eventually something should happen.” She stood up.

“I will.” I told her, though I felt little hope something would happen at this point. Maybe I had burnt myself out destroying Cass?

We hugged and then she left. For the moment Astrid was still away. I suspected she was searching for my abductors. I remained in the garden trying to make the ball of paper ignite to no effect. I began to doubt I really was a sorceress. About an hour or so later Astrid finally returned. She found me in the garden still trying to ignite the paper in front of me. I was getting frustrated.

“Any luck?” She asked.

“No, but Lisette gave me some good ideas.” I replied.

“Well keep trying, but maybe you’ve had enough for today. It is starting to get cold and you should really come inside.” She advised.

I nodded. I felt I needed a break. I went up to the bedroom and put the ball of paper beside the bed.

“I’ll turn you to ashes yet!” I said to it. I then went downstairs to join Astrid. I found her in the kitchen warming up some blood. “Any luck in finding my abductors?” Astrid grimaced.

“I’ve found out who they were, but they’ve fled the country. Apparently they found out what happened to Cass. But don’t worry, eventually I will get them, even if it takes years. I’m a vampire, and time is on my side.” She replied with a confident manner.

“At least they will think twice before abducting me again.” I added. Astrid suddenly grabbed me and kissed me on the forehead.

“Don’t worry I won’t let them ever do that to you again.” She said holding onto me.

After dinner, a thought suddenly struck me when I was reading in the lounge. I looked for Astrid and found her in her study. She was seated at the desk and looked like she was writing a letter.

“What are you doing?” I asked.

“Dealing with some correspondence.” She replied still writing.

“Can’t you just send an email? Do you have to be so old school all the time?” I asked her.

“I prefer writing letters.” She answered. “Is there any reason you’ve come looking for me? Or are you needing some company?”

“I have to tell you something.” I admitted. She stopped writing and turned to face me.

“What?” She asked looking interested.

“Yesterday a man came into the shop. He said his name was Maximilian.” I told her. At the mention of his name Astrid’s eyebrows shot up.

‘The hunter?” She asked.

“Yes I had to have lunch with him, otherwise he threatened he was going to talk about it all in front of my boss.”

“Sounds like something he would do. What does he want with you?” Astrid asked concerned.

“He’s trying to get me to help destroy you.” I stated. Astrid shook her head.

“That horrible bigoted man has been trailing me for years. So what did you say?”

“I said I would think about it.” I told her.  She frowned at me.  “But I’ve been thinking, what if I pretend to help him so you can finally get rid of him?”

“You mean you tell him you will help destroy me, and then double-cross him?” She clarified. “I think I’ve been a bad influence on you.” She was looking at me impressed.

“Maybe.” I laughed. “I did not like him at all and I certainly don’t want him to harm you. I thought this would get him out of our hair.” Astrid slowly nodded her head at my words.

“Yes it could work. When do you see him again?” She asked.

“Tomorrow.” I replied.

“Okay go and talk to him and find out what he has planned, and then let me know.” She said standing up smiling. “Just be careful when dealing with him.”

“I will.” She came over to me and gave me a hug. We kissed.

“I could really fuck you now.” She said. I laughed again.

“Go ahead.”

With that she picked me up and carried me to the bedroom. She dropped me on the bed and then ripped all my clothes off. Within moments her face was between my thighs as her cold tongue licked me out. We spent the next few hours bringing each other to orgasm until we both finally lay there exhausted. Afterwards we cuddled and I fell asleep. When I awoke sometime later, Astrid was gone. I thought about what I had said to her.

If you play this right, you could get rid of both of them, a thought in my head said. I smiled to myself.

I grabbed the ball of paper by the bed.

“Burn!” I commanded.

The paper suddenly caught alight. As I concentrated on it, it burned more intensely until there were just black ashes in the palm of my hand. I blew them away and then went back to sleep.

 

 

Next episode: The Plan

 

 

Thanks to Charli Mills for the coffee ❤

 

 

Please donate! 🙂

 

 

©2019 Joanne Fisher