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The Vampire Chronicles:

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#41 Raeven


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Posted 11 July 2008 - 05:45 AM

The travelling minstrels and troubadours had arrived in Caerleon the week before and Lord and Lady Dragomir had been invited to join the other nobles of the city for an evening of feasting, jousting and dancing.

On receipt of the invitation Samael had instructed Juliette to take them to the best dressmaker and tailor in Caerleon….four days later two large trunks were delivered to the house…there were fine gowns and undergarments for Annise, doublet and hose for Samael and simple woolen garments for their servants.

As dusk fell Samael summoned Tomas

"Ready the carriage, we leave within the hour"

Samael adjusted his fitted blue damask doublet and entered Annises dressing room….

"My sweet, I have gifts for you, something for you to wear this evening"….he handed her a full length velvet cloak, edged with ermine and a small rectangular box….inside the box lay a gold chain with a diamond and emerald pendant

Juliettes eyes widened when she saw the gifts…she reached out to touch the cloak

"‘Tis beautiful sir…..like my lady….and the jewels, see how they sparkle, just like my lady’s eyes", she gazed adoringly at Annise….Samael raised an eyebrow and smirked….he took Annise in his arms

"She worships you, as do the others…..he smiled……as do I."

#42 Nikki Peppermint

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Posted 13 July 2008 - 08:58 AM

Leaving Samael's embrace, Annise motioned Juliette to hold her new cloak. She gazed down into the box with the pendant and stroked its cold fiery beauty with one pale finger. She had long been enamored of expensive jewels but hadn't owned any for many decades.

"It's exquisite, my darling," she breathed. " You are too good to me. You shall have the honor," she said, handing Samael the necklace.

Once the necklace lay against her chest, Annise turned to Juliette. The vampire could look down and see her deep green dress, the bodice high and the skirt flowing...the pearls and gold threads woven into an intricate design. But she could only touch her upswept hair, the long red locks held in place by hidden combs that Juliette had artfully placed. There were no mirrors in the bedchamber as they would have been useless.

Although looking at Juliette, Annise spoke to Samael.
"Tell me, my love, does she deserve praise or to be killed."

Juliette's eyes opened wide in sudden fear, hoping she had made her Mistress look beautiful enough. If not, then she deserved to die, the young woman thought.

Samael laughed and assured Annise she appeared every inch the beautiful noble woman. With a nod, Annise beckoned to Juliette and had the girl follow them down the grand stairs. Tomas was waiting, silent as ever and dressed in his driving uniform, by the front doors. Although Annise could not feel the southern winter's coolness, she wrapped herself in the cloak for appearances sake and made her way down the front stairs.

"You four," she said without turning around but pointing a finger at the four servants huddled at the door. "Finish your work then retire to your bedchambers. You know the rules...no one comes in and no one goes out. Remember...we will know."

Juliette, Mari, Elizabeth, and Sophie all nodded and hurriedly closed the door.

Annise waited for Samael to deliver her into the carriage, the wood which had been stained dark and rich. If she was going to be a "Lady" she was going to certainly enjoy the part. Tomas stood by the dark brown and black horses, all four tall, strong, and larger than normal--powerful beasts suitable for vampires.

"Oh, Samael," Annise breathed quietly, "it has been too long since I've "enjoyed" the company of the rich. Their blood is usually heavy and hot, and their skin soft and easy to pierce," she hissed. She shuddered excitedly at the memory.

Edited by Nikki Peppermint, 13 July 2008 - 09:25 AM.

#43 Raeven


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Posted 15 July 2008 - 04:27 AM

Samael lifted Annise up into the carriage, when she was seated he climbed in……..he would have preferred to be riding one of the horses but for tonight he would act like the Lord he was expected to be…he rapped on the side of the carriage to indicate to Tomas that they were ready to leave.

He smiled at his beloved, he envied her enthusiasm, for he could muster little himself.

"Their skin may be soft, but it smells, as their breath smells and their ….he realised that Annise was laughing…..He leaned over and kissed her softly on the lips….you are laughing at me my sweet…..but you must admit it’s true, would that I could just feed from your fragrant flesh"…

The streets were exceedingly narrow and unpaved and the carriage bumped and rolled…Samael frowned and wondered how much longer he would be forced to endure the discomfort…..as they approached the main street and market square where some of the festivities were to take place the mud gave way to cobblestones..

"How do humans survive this? Surely they would be shaken to pieces"

Toms pulled the reigns taut and signaled for the horses to stop….they slowed to a walk and then finally halted. Samael poked his head out of the carriage and sighed, so many humans all in one place, the houses surrounding the market square were tiny and densely packed together, the taller the houses the closer together they were, houses  on opposite sides of the street almost met in the middle forming a tunnel-like passage way over the street….his nostrils flared…the smell of excrement and disease mingled with that of unwashed bodies and perfumes  made from the oils of flowers and spices…not so long ago bathing had been popular, he remembered the public bathhouses, the feel of the hot water against his cold flesh, the feel of hot bodies pressing against him…now only the very  rich could afford firewood for hot water and he doubted that many of them bothered.

He turned back to Annise
….."we have to go the rest of the way on foot, the streets are too narrow for the carriage…"

He stepped down, gave her his hand and helped her from the carriage

"Tomas, you will wait here for our return"….he pressed a silver coin into the mains hand, "find yourself something warm to eat and drink, it will be a long, cold night for you."

He placed Annises’ hand on his arm….she was looking around and smiling, her eyes were sparkling with delight…he shook his head, Annise had a sense of adventure that allowed her to put her concerns aside, she could throw herself fully into each moment, each new experience, he couldn’t do that, he could never forget that he had responsibilities, could never forget who and what he was….he sensed someone approaching

"Lord and Lady Dragomir?"

Samael nodded at the young man who now stood in front of them

"Lady Gabrielle sent me to escort you to the tournament area…please follow me."

#44 Raeven


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Posted 15 July 2008 - 04:36 AM

525 years ago

The rage and hatred built up in Annise as she watched, horrified, as first one then the other of her sisters was drained of blood and then forced to feed from Caleb. She continued to scream and kick and fight but was held fast by her captor. She felt him breathe his cold breath down her neck as he watched as well. All around her were the cries and struggles of the other daughters, but Annise had only eyes and ears for her own kin. Celestria and Sibella finally lay unconscious together, the vampire blood working its way through their bodies...bringing them back to life as the undead.

Finally Caleb turned to her, his mouth and long, sharp teeth dripping with blood. His eyes were cold and black yet full of fire.
"And now for you," he growled.

With a savagery that had been building up inside him, the nightwalker grabbed Annise's hand hard enough to break her wrist and she screamed in agony. He knew it would heal later, but she did not. The pain terrified the young woman. The primative animal in Annise roared to the surface as she fought the vampire. Caleb ripped at Annise's flimsy, white dress, exposing her half-naked torso. He held her tight enough to crush ribs and bit down hard, taking her roughly and draining her of her blood in excruciating agony. All the love and hope and delight that Annise once possessed about life ended at that moment. She vowed revenge on humanity and let the hatred consume her.

She screamed the loudest of them all, the cry of a banshee, and arched her back while the vampire ripped at her neck.

"And now...my beauty, my bewitching queen...drink from me and live forever...you will be mine, and mine alone."

Caleb was holding Annise in his arms as he knelt next to her. He tore open his wrist with his fangs and forced it to her mouth. Barely alive Annise tried to resist but found herself sucking greedily at the thick, red liquid which poured into her mouth. She drank until she passed out--the blood staining her mouth, chin, and neck--, the blackness enveloping her senses and dimming her mind. Like her sisters, Annise now waited to reawaken as a demon.

Caleb stood, staring down at his conquests...his three new lovers and slaves, if he so chose to use them as such. He turned to find Samael, a self-satisfied look on his face as he saw the other girls unconscious as well. His men had done well, turning all of the young women. The clan would be that much stronger when they all awoke and learned to live in the night.

Samael overheard Calebs words to Annise, she would not be his, he would now allow it…he snarled and moved towards Caleb calling Mikhail to his side as he walked

"My Lord?"

He turned towards Mikhail and opened his mind to him….there’s been a change of plan my friend, we strike tonight while they are sated and slow……dawn approaches, we have little time, tell the men to build a pyre….then take them out quickly and quietly burn the bodies…any that offer allegiance to me get to live for a little while longer….leave Caleb to me…and spare the women….

Under the dark cloak of night Samael and his men started the slaughter..Mikhail slipped quietly behind one of Calebs guards and slit his throat, the guards scream was muffled by Mikhail’s hand….waste not want not, Mikhail lapped at the blood…when he had taken enough, he plunged his silver dagger through the guards heart and twisted… the corpse fell to the ground.

Samael drew the dagger from behind his back, leapt gracefully onto the sleeping platform and pinned Caleb down with surprising ease.
“How does it feel?” he whispered, holding the dagger firmly to his throat…Calebs eyes widened

"Who are you? You are stronger than you should be"….realization dawned….."you are one of the old ones?" Samael’s reply was to place the tip of the dagger on Calebs neck…he pierced the skin and felt warm blood spray over his hand…

"I am old yes, older than you, stronger than you…"

He pulled Caleb to his feet
…."but you could best me…shall we see? Or you could run…."

Caleb smiled

“I will not run from death! I embrace it for I am already dead"

Samael nimbly leaped  down from the platform, his slitted pale eyes never leaving his opponent's. His long white hair rippled in the breeze as a low growl escaped his throat…baring a set of silvery fangs he suddenly turned and sprang, using every ounce of muscle in his legs….. He launched himself towards Caleb and sank his teeth into the nightwalkers neck, ripping savagely at his flesh, spraying deep red over the rocks.

Caleb flung himself against his challenger, fighting off Samael with tooth and claw…he snarled and tried to loosen the hold on his neck….Samael pulled free leaving strips of flesh on his teeth…

"I am master here Caleb"…..he could hear other Nightwalkers approaching, coming to their leaders aid….he laughed, they will be too late….

In the pale, half-light of dawn he plunged the dagger into Calebs heart, the blood he had consumed earlier meant his heart was beating…Samael felt it’s vibration in his fingers as it slowed and then stopped….dark blood pooled on the cave floor….Caleb lay motionless, his heart now silent

Samael raised his head and stared at the nightwalkers….They were speechless at the sudden death of their leader, they lowered their eyes and heads submissively to their new leader

Present day....7pm.

#45 Nikki Peppermint

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Posted 16 July 2008 - 02:46 PM

Annise gathered her long dress and cloak up in her free hand to better make her way through the city streets. The noise and crowds around her brought back memories of centuries past in other cities...cities that had been 'modern' for their times...cities full of much for her to play with and be entertained by. Annise glanced up at Samael as they followed the young man to their hostess, the Lady Gabrielle. The vampire did wish that her love could let go and indulge himself...

"Oh, M'lady," a small voice said from the crowd, and Annise felt a tugging on her dress as they walked.

Barely turning her head, Annise peered down toward the sound. A young boy, no more than ten and dirty with living on the streets, was staring up imploringly at her. Her eyes narrowed slightly as she pulled her dress from the grasp of the dirty hand. Then Annise stopped, squeezing gently on Samael's arm. She motioned with her head toward the child and the two vampires communicated silently for a brief moment. Taking the coin from her love's gloved hand, Annise pressed it into the boy's hand, but grabbed his wrist to prevent him from bolting. She leaned over slightly, stared into the boy's wide eyes, and spoke only briefly before turning away.

"Here you! Get away...get away from her, you scoundrel!" the young man leading them yelled at the boy who was already dashing madly through the darkened streets. "Lady Dragomir, my sincerest apologies. To you as well, my Lord," their guide said with a nervous bow.

"'Tis nothing," Annise said simply, waving the man on with her hand, the silk gloves shining in the light of the street lanterns as they continued on.

The boy ran into a small alley, stopping only to peer at the back of the Lady who'd given him the coin. *Remember who was kind to you* echoed in his mind over and over. And he would...oh, yes, he would. The boy sighed with love in his heart.

"Ah, here we are, away from the crowds and the masses," their escort replied, gesturing for Annise and Samael to precede him into a large open area that had been cordoned off with bales of hay and temporary wooden fencing.

The city police wandered the perimeter, as did various guards of the Duke's, keeping out those not personally invited. They would watch the jousting and other entertainment from the outside, from places set aside for them. There were booths of food and drink set up in the market square for the townsfolk. Inside the wealthy and their guests wandered contentedly, talking and laughing. Further on were large, colorful tents and pavilions lit by lanterns. Some were open and some closed, but shadows could be seen fluttering back and forth inside. Annise noticed a large palace set apart from the town and guessed the Duke of Caerleon would reside there.

"Ian!" a feminine voice called out. "Is that Lord and Lady Dragomir you have?"

"Yes, M'Lady," he said with a bow. He melted into the shadows at a wave from the approaching woman.

"Lord Dragomir," she said with a slight bow of her head, her blue eyes drinking in Samael's exotic good looks and commanding manner. She was surprised at how young the Lord and Lady were.

Annise didn't need her telepathy to understand the other woman's thoughts. She wondered if Lady Gabrielle would faint on the spot from arousal and raised her eyebrows in amusement.

"Lady Dragomir," the noblewoman said to Annise as she recovered her manners and began to chatter. "So wonderful of you to come. We had no idea the Di Meo manor had been bought...no idea at all! You must tell all of us how you came here, how you know the Di Meo's...such a horrible lose they had, and to lose their house and land...," Lady Gabrielle clucked her tongue briefly as she led them toward one of the enclosed tents. "You must have food and drink," she insisted. "And here comes my husband."

"Pleassse, call me Annise," Annise said trying to restrain her usual hiss and smiled, keeping her shortened fangs hidden. Lady Gabrielle would be easy to manipulate, Annise decided...she'd seen the type amongst nobles many times. She gave Samael a secret smile that told of her excitement and plans while the Lady's husband approached them.

Edited by Nikki Peppermint, 16 July 2008 - 02:49 PM.

#46 Raeven


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Posted 19 July 2008 - 01:43 PM

Samael returned Annise's smile, perhaps mixing with humans was going to be more pleasurable than he imagined….he lightly touched Lady Gabrielle’s mind and his smile widened……she would come to him willingly and it would be easy for him to erase her memories….

As Gabrielle’s husband arrived a light breeze blew through the narrow streets….he could smell flowers and grain, crumbs of food, dropped sweetmeats, beer and wine….he could hear a hundred hearts racing with excitement…he pulled Annise closer to him, she was his anchor….he took a deep breath to steady himself…

"Lord and Lady Dragomir I presume? I am Lord Raphael Chastain…"

Samael bowed politely….I am Samael and this is my wife Annise….we have recently moved into Di Meo manor, he smiled, as your good lady wife is already aware of….

Raphael glared at his wife, his cheeks reddening…

"Gabrielle, please tell me you have not been asking them questions already…..Lord Dragomir, I apologize for my wife’s ….. Samael laughed

"Lord Chastain, Raphael, think nothing of it….women are naturally curious creatures, I am sure Annise will be happy to furnish Gabrielle with all the answers she desires…now come, food and drink were mentioned and I am starved…."

As they walked towards the banqueting area he linked his mind with Annise.

I do believe that I am enjoying myself my sweet…..if I could only get them to bathe, I would spend more time in their company…..they are quite fascinating.

Samael followed Raphael into the largest of the pavilions….there were rows of low tables and large, colorful cushions for seating….the tables groaned under the weight of food, roasted birds, stewed rabbit with vegetables, grilled fish, tarts, olives, almonds, spiced honeycakes….gold and silver ewers filled with rose scented water were placed in the centre of each table along with elaborate candlesticks….the pavilion was lit by torch light and warmed by a central brazier…..he felt Raphaels hand on his shoulder and resisted the urge to step away…..

"Wonderful is it not? Such a feast…come, come, let us be seated….while we eat you can tell me how you came to be in Caerleon and I will introduce you and your beautiful lady to the people that matter, the people of power, people like us…. "

As they sat down Samael looked directly into Raphaels eyes…..he planted a simple suggestion into the mans mind

"You will see us eat and drink heartily"

A serving boy arrived at the table and filled the heavy stemmed pewter goblets with warm spiced wine

Samael raised his drink and proposed a toast

"To new friends"

When the last of the desserts had been served, a horn sounded

Gabrielle clapped her hands and smiled

"The jousts are about to begin……let us take our seats outside…"

#47 Nikki Peppermint

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Posted 20 July 2008 - 09:21 AM

Annise had surreptitiously watched Lord Raphael and Lady Gabrielle Chastain--as well as the other guests they were introduced to, as they all ate and drank with gluttony and abandon--carefully all throughout dinner. She knew those closest to them had "seen" her and Samael partaking of the food and would think them mere humans. Samael was correct about the bathing, though. All of their servants were required to be clean, as would her worshipers be.

"Come, Lady Annise," Raphael said with a flourish of his hand held down to her as the sound of the horn stopped. The larger, middle-aged man--who barely matched Annise's stately height--tucked her hand in his arm proudly and led the way out of the pavilion and to the nearby field. Samael escorted Lady Gabrielle, who giggled like a young girl to be on such a handsome, young man's arm.

Annise knew her lover still looked so very young, but his hundreds of years as a vampire gave him a commanding presence that very few could resist.

"Sit here, please, Lady Annise," Raphael gestured to several wooden benches placed on a raised platform, as he left room for himself on the end. "Samael, Gabrielle," the Lord gestured so the women were sitting together.

"This is merely the first day...well, night rather...of the tournament," Lady Gabrielle explained. "Several of the the Duke's squires have been granted knighthood, and this is a chance for them to prove their skills against more experienced knights. Tonight is a special tournament, though...usually they are held during the day, as you'll see more tomorrow. I do hope you will be in attendance," the noblewoman said sincerely. Then... "But tonight the Black Knight is fighting...he only fights at night and has his own masked squires and grooms, and so far no one has figured out who he is. It's all quite thrilling and secretive, he's been quite the hit at jousting tournaments over the past year."

Annise merely smiled at Lady Gabrielle. She and Samael could certainly be seen during the daylight hours, if they took precautions...but spending an entire day under the sun was not possible. Still, perhaps they could make an appearance in the late afternoon.

On the edge of the field hundreds of townspeople and peasants milled about.  The atmosphere was like a carnival and would continue again tomorrow, spilling into the market square and other parts of the city.  Jugglers, minstrels and dancers entertained and moved among the crowd, while the city guards watched for pickpockets and thieves.

The redhaired vampire picked up on a conversation taking place quietly behind them...the whispers so low that no humans around could have heard.

"...suspect vampires in the caves, about two leagues east of the city," one male voice said.

"Have they shown themselves yet?" another male voice questioned.

"No...at least, we don't think so, there's no sign of them as far as we can tell."

"Will you go after them?"

There was a pause of indecision, then, "Two of our scouts never returned with vital information. We need to find out more."

Annise frowned. This wouldn't do, this would not do at all. She refused to share her hunting and playing grounds with another clan of vampires...and there was the risk that the others might expose her and Samael should they come in contact with each other.  A few single vampires hiding in the city they could deal with, but in Annise's experience, it came to no good to attempt an alliance with a clan. Each would want control. She wove her way into Samael's mind to see if he had heard as well.

Edited by Nikki Peppermint, 20 July 2008 - 01:02 PM.

#48 Raeven


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Posted 22 July 2008 - 06:15 AM

Samael found himself intrigued by Lady Gabrielle’s description of the black Knight, a knight who only fought under cover of darkness…he wondered if the knight was human, he wondered if he offered himself to meet all comers or if his opponents were chosen in advance…..a hint of a smile touched his lips, he was a skilled horseman and knew how to handle a lance…it had been decades since he’d jousted…..

He felt the featherlight touch of Annises mind connecting with his…..he had been so lost in thought that he had not heard the conversation she referred to….he frowned, he needed to stay alert, he hadn’t survived for so long by being careless…..he stood up and reached for Annise

"Raphael, Gabrielle would you excuse us for a moment…we’ll be right back, we don’t want to miss the Black Knight."

He led Annise away to the side of the pavilion

"We need to find out exactly what those men know, if there are vampires nearby we will have to eliminate them, I like it here, I want to stay for a while…I will not have others of our kind encroaching on our territory….."

He glanced back to where they’d been sitting….he saw three men sitting with their heads bowed, deep in conversation….he focused on the youngest of the three, a man of no more than 19 or 20…young minds were more malleable…..

"Annise, my sweet, I think that young man is interested in you…yes, yes..here he comes, he needs to speak to you, he thinks you are the most beautiful woman he has ever seen…he wants to tell you about the threat, he wants to keep you safe…."

As the man drew closer, Samael stepped away

#49 Nikki Peppermint

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Posted 25 July 2008 - 11:09 AM

Annise smiled slowly as the young man, a newly recruited secret vampire hunter, approached, his eyes frantically seeking out hers...his hand reaching for her pale one as she held it out toward him. As he gently took her hand, Annise allowed them to melt further into the milling crowd, blocking the sight of his friends. She used the flickering shadows of the torches to her advantage.

"Yesss," she whispered to him before he had a chance to speak. "Yes, you wish to tell me all about the vampires." Her hiss was low and soothing as she moved closer and listened carefully as he spilled the secret his group was keeping.

People moved around them, seeing the beautifully and well-dressed redhaired woman and the young nobleman yet not seeing them. At least, if questioned, none would truly be able to remember exactly who the woman had been nor what she looked like.

"You've done well," Annise whispered into his ear. She could feel his racing pulse--the blood coursing through his body...through her own body and see the throbbing of the vein in his neck. She licked her lips lightly but restrained herself. It would only cause her pain. If she wanted this one, he'd have to come to her willingingly and without fear. But now was not the time.

The vampire put a cool hand on the young man's cheek.
"You will go now," she continued. "You will only remember seeing a beautiful woman who you wished to speak to...but, alas, you could not find her in the crowd. You do not remember what she looked like." Annise paused and smiled secretively. "You will feel remorse but the memory will fade quickly. Close your eyesss," she hissed softly.

And when the young man did just that--standing in the shadows--Annise disappeared into a shadow herself until she reached Samael. She watched as someone bumped into the young man and he woke, shaking his head. He looked around confused...knowing he saw the beautiful woman but unable to find her. He began winding his way back through the crowds to his bewildered friends.

"Two leagues to the east of Caerleon," Annise said in a hushed tone. "They have no definitive information yet...they...the vampire hunters," she said with disdain, "have sighted the Nightwalkers' victims' remain in the poorer parts of the city. They suspect the lair is in a group of caves, but their scouts sent to verify have yet to return since yesterday. The hunters plan an attack in two days time."

Annise glanced around, noticing the jousting match had begun and all attention was on the dirt arena waiting for the arrival of the mysterious Black Knight.

"Do we go vampire hunting, my love?" she asked Samael, leaning close to him and running a sharp fingernail down the front of his clothing.

Edited by Nikki Peppermint, 25 July 2008 - 11:14 AM.

#50 Raeven


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Posted 29 July 2008 - 03:53 AM

"We do my sweet, but not just..  yet he captured her hand and kissed her fingers….I want to see this mysterious dark knight, he intrigues me and very little intrigues me these days….come let us return to the Chastains…..we will leave after his joust, then we will head into the ‘poorer part’ of the city…he smiled…..and feast"

He took her hand and they walked back to their seats…

"Raphael, Gabriella..have we missed anything?"

He could see that they both wanted to ask where he and Annise had gone, why they had gone….

He turned his attention to the Arena

"I assume that that is the Black Knight?"

Lady Gabriella scooted forward on her seat..

"Oh yes, that’s him…she leaned over to whisper in Annises’ ear…..let me tell you what they say of the black knight

If you sneak outside late at night you’d best beware…The black night hides in darkness, he prowls through the night…….. His tastes are many, his thirst unquenched."

Raphael nodded

"I used to think it was just a silly tale to keep the children in bed, nothing more…but the rumours Samael…the stories…let me tell you what I know…the Knight was purported to be the protector of a king’s forest and castle in some far off land…people came to fear him, his reputation preceded him, young children were raised by the threats of his rage and thirst for blood. He was a fierce warrior, tall and strong……

Samael smiled

"He doesn’t sound so bad…..just a man with a taste for ‘justice’"

Raphael shivered…."that’s not all…..I used to think the same as you, but then I realized something, these rumours, stories, they have been circulating for several generations at least…if this black knight is the original black knight he would be over 100 years old…"

Samael laughed

"No-one lives that long my friend…..that is why no-one sees his face….perhaps the title is passed from father to son…he shrugged….who knows, but I assure you the man sitting astride that horse is not an old man"

At that moment the knight turned and stared into the crowd……he lifted the visor that covered his eyes leaving the rest of his face obscured….his gaze rested on Samael and Annise…..fire burned in his eyes.

#51 Nikki Peppermint

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Posted 29 July 2008 - 11:13 AM

It amused Annise to return to her seat in front of the young nobleman from whom she had extracted the information about the vampires and then cleansed his memory. She knew he was feeling uncomfortable but not why. She ignored the feeling of being a bit stifled what with the bodies pressing all around her, but she accepted this as a necessity of associating with humans and focused her attention on the 'story' of the Black Knight as Gabrielle and Raphael spoke. She listened as she watched the huge knight dressed in what appeared to be expensive black armor ride out amidst the fanfare of trumpets and the cheers of the crowd.

Annise thought back to when Lady Gabrielle had casually mentioned that the Black Knight's secret identity was "thrilling and secretive" and he was "quite the hit" over the past year...to now this dark tale of his long, and somewhat bloodthirsty history. She wondered if these humans weren't confusing their own dark tales...or perhaps someone had decided to bring these supernatural rumors to life. That thought amused Annise. The human and elven races were more fascinated with the supernatural than most cared to admit...she knew there were more pagans still around than the New Religionists would like the world to believe.

The vampire smiled to herself as Samael pretended to try to convince the Chastains that there was nothing to the Black Knight that couldn't be explained. Best they don't realize more than they have to. Annise could almost believe it herself until the knight rode past them, turned his head, and through his upraised visor stared with eyes of fire at Samael and herself!

Annise snarled slightly, her lip quivering and low growl emanated from her throat. She quickly glanced on either side but it didn't seem as if Gabrielle or Raphael were seeing what she was. They, and the rest of the crowd, seemed excited and nervous and full of energy.

"They don't see!" she mentally hissed to Samael as the knight raised one arm and pointed at them before closing his visor and galloping back to the start of the jousting point.. "They saw nothing."

She knew Samael had witnessed the fire where the knight's eyes should have been from the stiffness of his posture. For her own part, Annise remained silent and watched the Black Knight accept his lance--also black but painted with rich green and purple stripes--and shield from a squire. The crowd cheered as his opponent, a large, strong man with flowing blond hair rode into the jousting arena waving and smiling in the flickering torchlights. There were always men brave...and or stupid...enough to think they could defeat the Black Knight, and indeed sometimes they did.  

The blond opponent situated himself at one end of the barrier between the knights and horses and raised his lance. The Black Knight did the same, and Annise felt a low roar inside her head--something evil resided inside that black armor. The vampire shivered slightly...despite her own evil nature, she wasn't certain she wanted to find out who, or what, the Black Knight really was.

But then again...the thought of knowing was too deliciously intriguing to be ignored. Annise found herself rising with the rest of the nobility as both knights suddenly dug their spurs into their horses' side and charged!  As the horses raced toward each other, the earth vibrated beneath their hooves. The cheers of the crowd began to rise as again and again the crack of lance upon lance and the thunder of lance upon shield was heard.  Suddenly one knight was unseated, the challenger. With his lance broken he fell helplessly to the hard ground. The crowd grew deathly silent as he lay still.  

The Black Knight dismounted and slowly drew his sword.  He stood towering above his fallen foe--who had opened his eyes, his blond hair splayed out around him. The winner put his sword to the other's throat while the fallen knight struggled to his knees, a sign of surrender.  The crowd was still. It was not the practice for the winner to actually kill his opponent, but Annise could see the tip of the blade actually pressing on the blond knight's throat. She was sure no one else noticed. Her acute vision afforded her a clearer view than the mortals.   It was with a collective sigh that the crowd witnessed the Black Knight suddenly withdraw his sword, bow slightly, and make his way back to the tent housing the jousting players.

"Oh my goodness," Lady Gabrielle said suddenly, waving a small fan in front of her face and looking a bit pale. "I thought...well, I could have sworn he...the Black Knight...was going to kill the other one. But...but that's just not part of the games, so I...I don't know why...Oh dear, Raphael, perhaps I need some water," the older woman said weakly. She leaned against her husband.

Annise glanced at Samael.
"He wanted to," she thought to him. "He wanted to kill. Did you feel it?"

Edited by Nikki Peppermint, 29 July 2008 - 01:56 PM.

#52 Raeven


    Having a Mads moment

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Posted 01 August 2008 - 10:05 AM

Samael’s gaze was fixed on the Black Knight…..he didn’t look away until the Knight had disappeared into the tent….

"I felt it too my sweet….we were meant to feel it….Lady Gabrielle’s reaction confirms that, this knight has fought many times before and never done this, so why now? Because of us, he sensed us, saw us for what we are…I want to know more about this knight….but first we need to get out of here, I need to feed…and then we need to deal with the other nightwalkers…."

He stood up…"Raphael, Gabrielle…..we must leave now….We have an early start in the morning, business to attend to..it has been a pleasure, we will do it again…Lady Gabrielle I trust that you are not too distressed by the Knights behaviour"..he smiled…"nothing more than showmanship I am sure…he bowed politely and took Annises hand….."we will endeavor to be home in time to see tomorrows jousting…he waited patiently while Annise said her goodbyes….Raphael stepped forward and kissed her on the cheek, Samael growled softly and pulled her towards him

"We need to leave beloved, my control is slipping…."

"Lord Chastain, Lady Chastain until tomorrow…."

Once they were clear of the crowds he took a deep breath to clear his head….

"Let us walk further into the city…..let me show you where I found Tomas and Juliette …it is a good place to hunt.."

They kept to the shadows, the wind howled as it echoed around the narrow streets…..few torches lit the way…as they reached the poorest part of the city Samael relaxed….."murderers, bandits, rapists and the homeless….my kind of people"…..his senses raged and his nostrils flared..he caught the putrid scent of unwashed human flesh…."look my love, a couple…a whore and her client…he chuckled…perfect…she is thinking of knocking him unconscious and taking his purse, he is thinking about taking what he wants and killing her…come, lets have some fun…he crossed the street…the couple turned to face him and he saw the woman smile…she stepped away from the man

"Hello my pretty….looking for a little company…"

The man cursed…”Don’t come any closer, I’m warning you, the woman’s mine…..she laughed….."I belong to no-one til the moneys in me pocket and he looks like he has more to spend than you"…..the man grabbed her arm….be fair, first come first served my pet…..he can wait his turn or find another….he held his purse in his hand and leered at her…..show me a good time and this is yours.."

Samael moved closer….he grinned, being careful not to reveal the tips of his fangs….he winked at her..the man placed himself between him and her…his left hand reaching for the knife on his belt…


Samael waited for Annise to move into position then pushed the man back, easily overpowering him, he pushed him straight into his lovers waiting arms…then he took hold of the woman, he wrapped his arm around her plump frame…. he ran a finger along the side of her neck…he could feel the blood pulsing under his fingertip….he bent his head and thrust his fangs into her neck, piercing her warm and tender  flesh….her blood filled his mouth and ran down his chin….his body rejoiced in the moment, in the sweet taste of her blood….she struggled, her hands clawing at him….as her fear increased so did Samaels pleasure…blood and fear his favourite combination….as he drained her her struggles grew weaker, her fear grew stronger…Samael drew back and licked his lips
…"You should consider it an honour, I have just given your loathsome existence some meaning"….she whimpered as he plunged his teeth back into her quivering flesh…her heart slowed and her body twitched…when there was nothing left but her empty shell he dropped her to the ground and wiped his mouth on the back of his hand.

#53 Nikki Peppermint

Nikki Peppermint

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Posted 03 August 2008 - 06:42 PM


Annise opened up her arms to receive the gift from her lord and love. She held the struggling man in a vise-like grip and bore him to the dirty ground, mindless of her dress being soiled. She could feel his fear overwhelm his anger, as he found himself being restrained by a woman and truly unable to rise.

Knowing if she took him now, she would feel his pain and agony--her punishment from the supernatural world--Annise began to stroke his forehead and his dirty, limp hair with long, slender, cold fingers.

"Come, come now," she whispered, weaving her way into his simple mind. "You mussst love me...adore me...look into my eyes and see," she repeated over and over, hypnotizing him and quieting his struggles. "I can offer you eternal life...and strength...you will forever be powerful and respected. Would not that be wonderful?" she asked, her mouth close to his ear. Annise felt the man relax and begin to nod slowly. His desire for those things began to overcome his fear.

"Love me, adore me...cast away the fear," she continued, opening her mouth so her fangs could extend. As she began to lower her head to his neck, the unwashed man whispered that he did love her. He wanted to be hers forever.

"And so you shall," she lied as she bit hard into his neck, ripping the flesh in her great need for blood. Before he had a chance to scream Annise began to feed, capturing his fleeting adoration in her soul.

But his fear soon overcame him...and her as well. Annise shrieked in pain and pushed the half-dead, struggling human away, growling softly in pain. In anger she reached over and twisted his head sharply. She heard the tell-tale sound of his neck breaking. With blood on her lips, Annise looked up at Samael who had just dropped his victim to the ground.

"Home," she whispered. "Must feed more but from someone who doesss not fear...," Annise said, the tears of blood pooling in her bright green eyes.

"Is she sick, Mister?" a small voice suddenly came from the shadows. A young boy stepped out hesitantly, his hand seemingly glued to the wooden building next to him as if he didn't want to let go. He'd recognized the kind lady who'd given him money earlier. Although he was about ten years old, he seemed younger from his life on the streets. "She was kind to me," he said. "She told me to remember that...an' I did. I mean I am...remembering it. Can I help, Sir?"

His eyes moved to Annise and the love for her shone out of them.

Edited by Nikki Peppermint, 03 August 2008 - 08:53 PM.

#54 Raeven


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Posted 04 August 2008 - 07:35 AM

Samael looked at the child and smiled…

"Yes boy, you can help…take my lady back to our carriage, it will be waiting where you first saw us..the drivers name is Tomas, he will be expecting you..make sure no harm comes to my lady, she is more precious to me than life…."

He took Annise in his arms…

"Take from me my angel, take enough to secure the boys safe passage, he is small, easily drained, if you wish to keep him, which you do, you need to get him home and have the girls fatten him up…."

His hands rested in her hair as she drank from him…when she was finished he kissed her

"Take the child home Annise, I will see to these two…."

As they walked away, Samael lifted the two bodies effortlessly and carried them down to the docks……he threw them into the murky water and watched them float for a few moments before sinking….

He looked up at the sky, still inky black, the moon shrouded in clouds….he had enough time to find the nightwalkers lair and return home safely before full dawn…..Annise had told him that they were two leagues east of the city, two hours walk for a human, a half hour run for a vampire….he headed east….half a league away from the caves he stopped, the smell of decaying flesh assaulted him…he had found the remains of the two scouts….he bent down and examined the remains…there were multiple ragged bite marks on the neck and arms….he smiled…at least two of the nightwalkers were freshly turned, impulsive and hungry…he left the bodies undisturbed and returned to Di Meo manor.

#55 Nikki Peppermint

Nikki Peppermint

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Posted 07 August 2008 - 09:06 PM

525 years ago:

By the time of the next moon, there came the sounds of stirrings--moans and murmuring--in the cavern where the young women had been taken after their turning. One of the nightwalker guards on duty hurried to inform the new master of the Clan--Samael.

* * * * * *

Annise was the first of the three Sainte-d'Aignaux sisters to awaken. She merely lay for a moment staring sideways as Sibella and Celestria. Always beautiful her sisters were now breathtaking in appearance, and Annise could only stare for a moment. There was something different about them…about herself, too, she thought as she raised her hand and stared. The skin was pale, almost luminous and glowing in the flickering torch lights of the cavern. Then Annise frowned as she watched Celestria…her sister’s chest was still. The blond girl wasn’t breathing! Annise wrenched herself up, intending to feel for her sister’s pulse when a violent upheaval of her stomach caught her off guard. She rolled to one side and was disgorged whatever food had last been in her stomach. All around she could hear the sounds of gagging and then crying.

Including now from her sisters, both of whom had awoken.

* * * * * *

“Master…My lord, the fledglings are awakening,” the guard reported to Samael. “They will require their Sires…or teachers,” he added, remembering that Caleb had sired the three sisters but was now dead.

* * * * * *

Wiping her mouth on the back of her hand, Sibella screamed when she looked up at Annise and Celestria. “Your eyes…oh sweet gods, your eyes are red!” she shrieked.

Annise moved closer to her sisters and they clutched hands, while all around them the other girls were crying. “Yours too,” she whispered to Sibella. “Bright red!”

“O’what has happened?” Celestria asked to no one in particular.

There was no Sire yet to teach the girls that their eyes were red from massive amounts of their former living blood that still lingered in their tissues. Their eyes would return to normal as their old blood, with the vampire's venom in it, was consumed and replaced with feeding on fresh human blood for the rest of their unnatural lives.

Annise felt scared…frightened and horrified…and she began to remember.
“Celestria, you weren’t breathing when I woke up…but now you’re awake..let me feel…,” Annise began and reached out for her sister. She put an ear to the other girl’s chest. She did the same with Sibella.

There were no heartbeats.

Annise felt as if she were going to vomit again and shook her head. She then felt her own pulse and found it still as well.
“No…no, this can’t be happening…, she began to shake as she remembered, her red hair more glorious and shining than ever before falling over her shoulders.

“The vampire…that one called Caleb…he…he bit us, I remember the pain now…he turned us into one of him!”

The three sisters reached for their necks but found no sign of any wounds. Annise looked around her frantically at all the girls she’d known to see them in states from near panic to despair. What were they going to do?

Samael stood at the entrance to the cavern and watched the women….as ever his eyes were drawn to the red haired Sainte-d'Aignaux sister..Annise…she had been beautiful before the change, now she was breathtaking, her pale skin looked translucent in the torch light, her hair fell like a waterfall of silk across her bare shoulders…he knew that once she had fed her eyes would gleam like the brightest emeralds….he wanted her for his own and now that Caleb was no more he would have her….

He saw the panic in her eyes, the uncertainty…he stepped forward and extended his hand..

"What you are going to do now is embrace your new life, embrace what you have become…I will teach you what you need to survive…Caleb is no longer with us, I lead this clan now, you belong to me…first you need to feed…you all need to feed…if you cannot do it of your own free will I can command you…the choice will be yours.."

He clapped his hands and stood to one side as the guards ushered a group of humans into the cavern…they were all under Samaels control, all had glazed expressions…

The sound of their hearts beating echoed around the cavern, bouncing off the stone walls…

He pulled Annise to her feet
…."you will feed from me and only me…it will make you stronger than the others…you will not succumb to the blood madness that affects newborns….I offer myself to you Annise Sainte-d’Aignaux…"

Present day:

{We're on a little intermission, btw :angel:.)

Edited by Nikki Peppermint, 18 August 2008 - 07:18 PM.

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