Smoke curled outward from under Mohan’s duster, seeking lungs to fill.
“Who’s there?” yelled the recent vampiric conversion. A silver chain on his ankle limited his movement to the illuminated area of the spotlight. His night vision would not develop for three more nights, granting the watcher effective invisibility. She was impressed he had sensed her entrance, sitting quietly beside the empty rust-stained bowl until she changed shape.
Once the cavern swallowed the last echoing “therrrrre”, the new arrival cautiously drew air to speak. Holding the breath a moment, testing its flavor, she then slowing moved it over her vocal cords to answer, “Emily, Dion’s sire … your grandsire and keeper.”
“Where’s Dion?” Mohan rushed the light’s edge, pacing back and forth with his chain chiming against the stones. He earnestly sought her location, despite the disorienting echo. A useless task as he had not had a chance to develop the skill set; her servants had been under strict order to remain silent during his captivity.
“Being disciplined.” The vampire elder coldly stated as she moved over the loose overburden and wet tailings, judging the fog’s reach.
Mohan stilled as he processed the information. Living habits clung to him like leeches. His constant movement was distracting, but understandable. Only a week had passed since his removal from the grave; so she forgave him the disgusting habits he was displaying.
“He wasn’t supposed to turn me, was he?” Mohan’s brown curls fell across his forehead as despair hunched his shoulders.
“Awarding our blood to other supernaturals, can have …” Emily paused watching the smoke thicken and reach further into the abandoned mine before completing her thought, “… unexpected consequence.”
Mohan wiped his hands over his face. “Did you destroy him?”
“He is young, less than four decades old. I decided he should be given a chance to learn.” Emily took another breath to continue talking and this time felt the fog fill the corners of her little used lungs. She felt something, a wish to reassure the suffering child, hold him. Crushing the feeling to unfeeling, Emily declared, “You will not see Dion again.”
“But he only did it to save me!” Mohan shouted. “We love each other! Please!”
Whispering a final begging crossed his lips, “please.”
Jealousy, a much more familiar emotion than compassion, ripped through her. She nearly closed to force obsession on the boy. His love should only be for her.
…. Interesting gift, that fog. A little too visible at the moment. But she could already think of a few uses. The fog must be gaining in strength, otherwise her servants would have released him by now.
She would have to take over all care of the youngling. She pushed the bowl of blood she had brought with her across the light’s edge. Again, compassion tried to sneak in as she watched Mohan collapse crying. Tomorrow, after she has cleansed herself and arranged for a means to communicate without breathing his air, she would need to decide if she would let this one live.
(words 507 – originally appearing at Sunday Fun on Breathless Press 2/3/2013 (copyright of picture inspiring story was unknown); republished in new blog format 1/28/2018)