Erica Lucke Dean

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tales of the daywalkers (week 25)

Weekly Feature…Vampire Fiction Serial (Click to read week 24)

The Daywalker Chronicles

My father settled into a wing chair to read my vintage copy of King Lear by the fire as we waited for Sebastian and Claude to return. Unlike me, he seemed untouched by the tension filling the space between the walls in my house. My thoughts lingered in the faraway place occupied by the Empress Theodora and her magnificent stone. The very same stone Claude had hidden somewhere within these hollow walls.

Impatience colored my mood as I paced the floor. No matter how hard I tried, I couldn’t relax…my muscles coiled like springs. Hours had passed…they should have returned by now. I feared the truth about my letter had leaked out and Sebastian had taken his own form of revenge on Claude. In truth, I couldn’t find it in me to blame Sebastian if that had happened. Claude knew my feelings on the matter. It was a blatant betrayal. I had forgiven him, but it wasn’t my forgiveness he needed. And I knew he would never gain Sebastian’s.

A sound in the trees prompted me to freeze in place and listen. I heard them long before they’d reached the house. They were arguing and I was thankful they hadn’t uttered a word about the amulet within hearing distance of my father…at least yet.

The front door swung in, crashing against the wall behind it. “You don’t deserve her,” Claude growled, closely following Sebastian through the open door.

With impossible speed even for a vampire, Sebastian reached out, throwing Claude into the wall, embedding his impression in the plaster. Claude’s laughter surprised me more than the unprovoked attack.

“What the hell is going on?” I growled at them.

Sebastian’s eyes narrowed as he saw me in the foyer. “Your fledgling,” he spit the word out, “bit me!” He pulled his collar away from his neck to expose two savage wounds in his skin.

My eyebrows raised and my mouth fell open as I trained my eyes on Claude’s face.

Claude turned to Sebastian with a sideways grin perched precariously on his lips and shrugged. “Hey…you’re the one who whipped out the fangs first,” he snapped then turned to me. “It was him or me, and I hadn’t eaten yet.”

Claude winked at me.

The corners of my mouth curved down as I shook my head. “We can’t afford to fight amongst ourselves.” I shifted my eyes in the direction my father sat reading his book, and lowered my voice. “Time is wasting.”

“Victoria, I need to speak with you,” my father called out from the other room.

“Yes father,” I replied, flashing a desperate expression at Claude. He nodded faintly, and I knew he understood. The amulet must be retrieved quickly, and we needed to discover what we could before the sunrise.

My footsteps echoed against the marble as I crossed to the room where my father waited by the fire. “You wanted to speak with me?” my voice faltered as I spoke.

Father flipped the page in his book and continued to read as he addressed me. “I forgot to mention I’ve invited your sister to join us…”

“Catherine?” I blurted out? Wasn’t she watching over Anne?

He pulled his eyes from the page for an instant. “No…Elizabeth,” he paused when I sucked in a breath. “She should be arriving soon.” He went back to reading. “We’re going to need the daywalker formula…Sebastian should be preparing it by now.  Would you be so good as to see to that for me, child?”

“Yes father,” I said with my last breath. I couldn’t force myself to draw another.

Elizabeth.

My beloved younger sister, the purest of us all…a vampire. God helps us.

 

Until the next time…I’ll be back to editing!

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