Im·mi·nence: something imminent; especially : impending evil or danger
I was a queen, and you took away my crown; a wife, and you killed my husband; a mother, and you deprived me of my children. My blood alone remains: take it, but do not make me suffer long.
The endless halls were dark, but it didn’t matter much. Both of us could see. And so could the dark hooded strangers behind us. Their red eyes, although they were the same shade as mine, seemed even more intimidating.
They ushered us down the hall, standing so close it felt as though I could stop and have them run into me. The tiny one, I had forgotten her name, walked ahead of us. She stopped in front of two thick, heavy wooden doors, pausing to turn and glare at the two of us before throwing them open.
A man stepped forward to greet us, holding his hands out to the both of us and smiling. His long black hair hung to his shoulders, his red eyes were intimidating yet friendly. They held the wisdom and experience of someone who had seen it all. We each took a hand and he sighed.
“My name is Aro. Welcome to Volterra.”
“Ian did say he was picking us up after the movie, right?” Kimberly; always the worried one.
“He said he would be here, and I’m holding it to him…” even my voice, usually sure with everything I said, was unsure.
We stood in front of the movie theater waiting. Just like we had been for 15 minutes now. My phone vibrating in my purse made us both jump.
“Ian where the hell are you?” I shouted into the phone, hearing it echo back to me because Ian had me on speakerphone. I could hear the sound of his giant truck as it pulled out of a gravel drive way.
“I’m so sorry! Brandon took the truck and my mom wouldn’t let me borrow the car!” Brandon was a real… there were no words to describe Ian’s stepfather. I tried to avoid him as much as possible, and so did Ian. So I could understand why Ian would be late.
“How long is it going to take you to get here?” I could hear the fear in my voice as I said this; there was no one around, and something about the atmosphere was making Kimberly and I both extremely nervous.
“Rach, don’t worry I’ll be there as soon as I possibly can. Meet me in the back parking lot, that way I don’t have to go through all the stoplights on Bridge Street.”
“Okay.” I heard his phone click shut as he disconnected and shoved my phone back in my purse. “Come on.” I grabbed the sleeve of her sweatshirt and dragged her with me.
“Where are we going?”
“He doesn’t want to go through the lights on Bridge, so he’s picking us up in the back.” Kimberly stopped in her tracks, and jerked her arm out of my hand.
“Are you nuts? We’re gonna end up part of the plot for a Law and Order episode! Everyone knows you don’t wait in the back of a parking lot in the middle of the night!”
“Nothing’s going to happen, just cool your jets okay? You’re making me nervous!”
“You should be nervous!”
“Oh just shut up!” I started walking down the alley that led to the back parking lot of the movie theater; I heard Kim’s hesitant footsteps as she followed behind me.
“I’m going to kill you if we end up dead…” she whispered loudly grabbing at my arm.
“And how do you suppose you’re going to do that, huh? Good luck…” I felt the hairs on the back of my neck stand up, but ignored it. Nothing is going to happen to us… right?
“Did you hear that?”
“Hear what, Kim there’s nothing to hear!”
“Shhh! Just listen!” she clamped her hand over my mouth, neither of us breathed. There it was, shallow breathing, so quiet it almost couldn’t be heard. It sounded more like someone smelling the air rather than breathing. My heart stopped.
“Wh-who’s there?” I tried to shout, my voice shook so bad it came out as a whisper. I felt a rush of air as someone, or something flew by me so fast they were invisible. I looked over in time to see their shadow fly into the darkness on the far end of the alley, only a moment before Kimberly was thrown to the ground by the unseen monster.
I helped her up off the ground and pushed her toward the end of the alley.
“Run!” I screamed as loud as I could. She followed my advice and clumsily bolted for the end of the alley. He cut her off before she could get a chance to save herself. Frozen in place, and watching this mysterious man attack my best friend, I finally got to look death in the face. Or more or less, see what death looked like.
He was tall, lean; it was obvious, though, underneath his outdated clothes that he was toned with enough muscle to overtake two grown girls. But something seemed off; something about his movements… his moves were too graceful. His skin, or at least what I could see of it under the dim light from far away shops, was deathly pale.
Brought back to the present now, I realized that I had unconsciously walked closer to the man who was attacking Kimberly.
The unfamiliar feeling of adrenaline overtook my system and I collapsed onto his back; ripping at his hair and clawing at his face. It did nothing to stop him; he turned, and for a split second I saw not only what he had done to my best friend, but what he really looked like.
Kimberly’s neck was smeared with blood, with multiple bite marks that seemed to cover every inch of visible skin. She had her hand pressed against her neck as soon as the man was distracted, as if she were trying to keep the blood from pouring out of her neck the way it already was.
I looked to his face, instead of at Kimberly’s. his face was pale, like the rest of his body. His eyes were blood red. He held my wrists in one hand; his touch was ice cold. The adrenaline surging through my veins allowed me to see all this in seconds; but, I didn’t realize he had thrown me across the alley until my head smacked the brick wall with force strong enough to knock me out.
I slid down the wall, feeling the rough brick scrape the back of my head and leave it raw. My vision blurred and spun as I lifted my hand to the back of my head and felt the blood soaking through the beanie I was wearing. I looked up in time to see him bolt forward, so fast it took him less than a second, to stand over me.
He stared at me for a minute or so, I heard Kimberly’s sobs turn to screams.
“What did he do to me?” She screamed at the top of her lungs. The man turned to face her; he looked angry. He sighed and turned back to face me.
“I hope you realize what you’ve done to your friend, you see, I would have just ate her… but because you and your delicious smell distracted me now it’s too late to stop her transformation… which makes me wonder, what should I do with you?”
“What are you?” I tried to make my voice sound intimidating, but it was no use. He smiled showing all of his perfect white teeth, every single one of them sharp and pointed enough that they could pierce skin…
“You really want to know?” he didn’t give me time to answer he grabbed my head and shoved it to the side, grabbing my hair and pulling it out of the way. I screamed at the same time he bit down on my neck. Hard.
Kimberly’s screams were drowned out by my own as he pulled away from me and shoved my head back into the wall, putting me dangerously close to the unconscious state I had been drifting into minutes ago. My neck felt like it was on fire.
“What-what are y-you?” I whimpered.
“I suppose you should know, since you’ll be like me soon enough.” He picked me up and threw me over his shoulder, making my vision blur and spin again. He nudged Kimberly’s now unconscious form with his foot then picked her up and threw her over his other shoulder. How could he carry so much weight? I started to cry; my sobs shaking my body. I tried, and failed miserably to get out of my killers grasp.
“What are you going to do to us?”
“It’s already been done… you should be thanking me, you know? After all vampires live forever… isn’t that what all women want?” as he said the words, my body seemed to explode. I felt the burning that had been contained to my neck only seconds ago start to spread through my veins to the rest of my body.
His red eyes, attacking Kimberly, all the blood… him biting our necks…
Where was he taking us? What would happen when Ian came to pick us up and found an empty parking lot? Would he try to search for us? What would he think when he saw the blood in the alleyway?
We wouldn’t be going home tonight. There would be no warm bed waiting for us at home. Our parents would be worried when they couldn’t find us, but we couldn’t go back. Not now- the vampire with his unknown motives would follow us. Not to mention Kimberly was out cold, I was deathly close. We could never go back. So what would happen to us now?
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Interesting!!! I can't wait to see how it all unfolds
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The burning sensation grew stronger and I felt like I was on fire... except worse, much worse. I couldn't help but to think about what was going to happen to me. To Rachel. Ian must have known that we were missing by now, and surely, he would be searching for us. He probably would have seen all the blood that was left in the dark alley. He would call the police and everything would be okay.
There were three things I couldn't seem to quite figure out... one was, what was I becoming? I was definitely changing into something else. Outside of the burning, I could feel my body craving something... what though, I wasn't sure.
The second question floating through my head was, where was I? Maybe I was still in the alley? No. My back was not lying against concrete, I was on something softer than ground.
The third was, what happened to Rachel? Is she still alive? Or did the same thing happen to her as to me? I wasn't sure, but my only hope was that she had found a way to escape and was safe at home. This chance seemed unlikely though.
After a lot more time of excruciating pain, it seemed to subside. I wasn't sure how long I had been unconscious. Hours? Days? Weeks? The time was unclear.
When I finally had the power to open my eyes, I was stunned. Everything was absolutely clear. The moment I opened my eyes, I realized something was wrong. People weren't supposed to see things this clearly, this detailed. But somehow, I could. I swallowed, trying to clear my throat and felt it burn. I felt the sting and clutched at my neck. Water. I needed water.
As I looked around the unfamiliar room, I spotted a man. This man was not someone I had seen before. I tried to think of someone who may have looked similar but my past memories were fuzzy. Even the most horrifying memory of my life was fading away, not that I was particularly unhappy about that. I tried to think about the face of the man that bit me. The one that was trying to kill me. But no face had come to mind. I tried to think of Rachel, but she was also a blur.
"What did you do to me?" I gasped. I observed the room again and saw a beautiful girl lying asleep on a nearby bed. I looked more closely at her and something about her features seemed familiar.
"Rachel! What did you do to her?" I shouted. "Where are we?"
"Calm down. We're in Maine. It was a long trip from California." He said with a smirk.
"Why the hell did you bring us to Maine? And… what am I? I mean, this isn't normal. I can see every little speck of dust. I can hear what going on outside, far in the woods, and… I can't feel my heart beating..."
He chuckled. "You, my friend, are a vampire. I imagine your throat must be searing with pain. And I didn't bring you here. A friend of mine dropped you here a few days ago"
"V-vampire? Vampires aren't real. They don't exist! And thank you, I had completely forgotten about the burn in my throat until you brought it up again!" I said loudly.
"Vampires are very much real. And you are one. You're a newborn vampire, and the burning you feel in your throat is because you’re thirsty. Your body needs blood. When your little friend wakes up, we can all go on a hunting trip, it will be fun. Trust me."
"How can I trust you? I don't know you!" I shouted. I heard rustling from behind me, then a gasp.
I quickly turned to see Rachel's eyes fly open. Her eyes were blood red, just like the man's are.
"Who-who are you?" I whispered.
"My name is Edgar. I'm a good... person, I guess. Like I said, a friend of mine dropped you both here a few days ago."
I nodded, not able to trust my voice, and looked back to Rachel.
She swiftly sat up and narrowed her eyes at me. "Kimberly?"
"Yeah. It's me. And we're in a lot of trouble." I said, my voice shaky.
I felt my eyes prickle and, usually with this amount of emotion flowing through me, I would be crying. But, I guess vampires couldn't cry. I looked back to Edgar. "We're going to be... stuck like this... forever?" I guessed. He nodded.
"Rachel, is it? We're going out hunting. You already know that you're a vampire. Your throat burns because you need blood. Let's go." Edgar said, calmly.
"I'm not going anywhere with you! Your little friend tried to kill us!" I yelled.
"Calm down. I won't hurt you. I'm trying to help you. And my friend has been long gone for days."
"That guy tried to kill us!" Rachel shouted at him. "What makes us think you won't do the same?"
"I wouldn't hurt another one of my own kind. But aren't you glad he failed in killing you? You could be limp, lifeless carcasses on the ground right now, instead, you are alive and healthy." Edgar said.
"Alive? Healthy? I don't think you can call a vampire alive and healthy!" I said.
"Do you want the burning to stop or not?" Edgar asked, impatiently.
I sucked in a deep breath and the burn got stronger.
"I know that man tried to kill us, Kim, but he can help us now. He can show us how to be vampires." Rachel whispered from behind me.
I sighed. "Fine. One trip. After you show us the basics of this... life, I'm leaving."
"You can't leave just yet. I want to introduce you to the royalty of our world... The Volturi." He said.
"The who?" Rachel asked.
"The Volturi. They enforce the laws-"
"Laws? Vampires have... laws?" I asked, confused. This would all take quite awhile to sink in.
"Yes. You will learn them when I take you to Volterra." He said.
"I don't want to be here with you, why would I go somewhere else?" Rachel asked.
"You have to trust me. I won't hurt you. You're vampires now, I have to respect my own species."
I sucked in another deep breath. This all seemed too scary and uninviting to me.
A few moments passed as we considered our options.
"I-I can't stand the burn much longer. I trust you... enough." Rachel whispered.
Rachel had, basically, made the decision for me because a few minutes later, we were running at an impossible speed through the woods.
Edgar had told us we would go to the closest town. I didn't know the area and I wasn't familiar with any of it.
“Since we’re… vampires… we drink…”
“Blood?” Rachel finished my sentence. Edgar nodded.
"We can't be noticed. Too many people will ask questions and they could figure out too much. We need to keep a low profile." Edgar whispered when we were stopped behind a building in the cemetery.
I thought it was wrong to sneak up on the mourning people only to have them suffer their own deathly fate. But we had to... feed.
"When you smell the scent of their blood, just let your instincts drive you. It won't take long enough to be noticed, because most people avoid cemeteries. Who wants to go first?"
"I do." Rachel said, no hesitance in her voice at all. My eyes widened. "I can't stand it! I want the burn to stop!"
"The burn will not completely subside. The pain will ease, but there will still be remnants of it no matter how much you feed." Edgar said.
"Fantastic." I muttered.
"I'm ready. Let's do this." Rachel clapped her hands together and walked forward a few steps. As she got closer to the woman kneeling by the gravestone. A few seconds later, I heard the woman's pleas and looked away. It was too gruesome to watch, even though it was something I would have to endure for the rest of my life... If you could call it a life.
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