The Bashful Vampire Murder

The Bashful Vampire Murder

A Chapter by Bob Frey

The story begins where other vampire tales end.


1. Staked


Karl had followed the bloodsucker over the streets of the city. In the maggot of his mind, he had watched him sweep down on his victims like a bird of prey, puncture their necks with his lethal fangs, and drain their blood until they shuddered and collapsed into unconsciousness. Yet he had been powerless to stop him. He would be no match for the creature's super­human strength. If it came to a fight, the creature would handle him like a baby, and it would be all over in seconds. He watched nervously as the bloodsucker slipped a key into the door, opened it, and entered. And then he held his breath and crossed his fingers un­til a light went on in a window that was above the store below.

     Finally, he had him where he wanted him. After months of dark thoughts, flights of fancy, and maledictions, he had tracked him to his lair. Now it would only be a matter of hours until the sun came up and he could do the job. He tapped the black medical bag on the seat beside him and smiled. His namesake would be proud.

    But wait, hold the phone. He hadn't done the deed yet. Don't count your chickens before they hatch, Karl, his father would say.  There was still a lot to be done be­fore he could put an end to this lecher. One of the main characteristics of the Van Helsing family had always been resolve. That was how they had become the most celebrated vampire hunters in history, beginning with the renowned Abraham Van Helsing, the original vampire hunter who had tracked and slain the infamous Count Dracula.

     Karl peered out the windshield into the eerie twilight and shivered. Why would the parasite choose to live in such a rundown neighborhood? The store beneath his living space looked squalid and barely functional. Several other shops were boarded up and deserted. And the street itself was dingy and dirty and looked as if it hadn't been swept in ages.  The bloodsucker had money. Karl knew that. He didn't have to live in such a crummy neighborhood. It was a puzzle, like the creature himself. How could he be so charming and loving in one moment and so criminal and cold in another?

     It had been a long day and he was tired. Karl put his head back against the seat, just for a minute, and the next thing he knew it was day­light. He checked his watch. It was late but not that late. He still had plenty of time to do the deed. He was lucky he hadn't been attacked and robbed, asleep at the wheel like that in this God-forsaken neighborhood. He pushed up his eyeglasses, grabbed his black bag, and got out.

     Some locals were already up and around, low lives that looked like they had never done an honest day's work in their lives. That would work to his advan­tage. Such people wouldn't think twice about him tampering with the lock on the bloodsucker's door. Karl crossed the street, careful to avoid eye contact with anyone, lest they ask for a handout or something even worse.

     When he got to the door, Karl took an L-shaped tool out of his pocket and carefully inserted it into the keyhole. While turning the tool with one hand, he in­serted a pick with the other and began to lift the pins of the lock one by one. In the old days, when vamps lived in castles and spooky places such as that, there was no need for a skill like lock picking. Nowadays, modern vampires might have locks on their doors like everybody else, so the skill would be a necessity. After several clicks, Karl turned the knob, and the door opened. Smiling, he removed his tools, took a look around, and stepped in.

     The hallway was dark and foreboding, just like in the movies. He stood for a moment and let his eyes adjust until a long flight of stairs materialized in front of him. Then he started up. He hoped the creature didn't have anybody up there with him. It was unlikely. Still, you never knew. Well, if he did, Karl was prepared to deal with it.

     At the top, he found the doorknob and turned it. The door was unlocked. Carefully, oh so carefully, he pushed it open and entered. Again, it was dark and quiet, as silent as a tomb. A strange odor hung in the air.  It wasn't garlic, of that he was sure. Then he realized with a start, it was him. It was the smell of his own body, the smell of funk, fear for his unworthy soul. His hands were sweaty and his mouth was as dry as toast. He had to get a grip on himself. Yes, it was dark in here, in what appeared to be a living room. Yet it was daylight outside and people were out on the street. With all the alcohol the bloodsucker had consumed, he would be asleep, as helpless as a child.

     With that thought in mind, Karl stole across the carpeted floor, went through an entranceway, and took a right. He tried the first door that he came to. It opened with a creak. There in a dim shaft of light escaping from a shutter on a window was a casket silhouetted on a bed. It couldn’t have been any better if he had planned it. His heart went pitter pat as his eyes surveyed the room. There didn't seem to be anybody but him and the bloodsucker. Pulling himself together, Karl entered.

     Once inside, he couldn't see very well. Despite all his preparation, he had forgot­ten a flashlight. He could feel a crest or some kind of metal work on the face of the casket, and he was sure he would be able to open it. However, if he opened the shutters to see, he might have a battle on his hands. What to do?

     After a moment of contemplation, he sat the black bag on the floor, knelt, and took out the wooden stake and hammer. Then he stood up, felt for the edge of the lid and lifted it. His fear was ill founded. He could see fine. His eyes must have adjusted to the dark. He could make out the profile of the monster’s face, and more important, the area of his heart. Cautiously, he placed his hand on the creature's chest and thought he felt a beat. Just to be sure, he carefully opened the bloodsucker's shirt and tried again. Yes, that was it all right, slow and faint in sleep, but never­theless it was his ticker, the divine spark. Keeping his fingers on the spot, Karl positioned the stake, wrapped his hand around it, raised the hammer, and came down with a thump. To his horror, the bloodsucker let out a blood-curdling scream that almost sent him through the roof.

     Dizzy and breathless, Karl screwed his courage to the sticking place and shuddered as blood oozed out onto his hands.  He should have expected it, the yell. Damn, you couldn’t drive a wooden stake through someone's heart without him yelling about it. Karl remembered the stethoscope he had brought along just in case, but now he was sure he didn't need it. The creature was dead and gone. Nobody could live through that. He would never prey on any one again. His blood­sucking days were over.

     Karl's happiness turned to panic after he went back down the stairs and opened the door. In broad day­light, several hooligans were stripping his car. Karl ran at them full speed, screaming all the way. However, instead of running off as he expected, they simply stopped and stood their ground. “Hey, that's my car,” he said.

     “So?” one boy said with a grin.

     “So leave it alone, will you?”

     “Who's gonna make us?” the boy said.

     “Yeah, who's gonna make us?” the other boys chimed in.

     “Me,” Karl said. He reached into his pocket and pulled out a handgun.

     “Now hold on, Mister, don't do anything stupid,” the boy said. He dropped a hubcap and stood up.

     At that moment, Karl heard the wail of a siren and saw a black-and-white come lumbering down the street. The boys disappeared like wild horses, and Karl was left all alone with the revolver in his hand. As the door of the squad car opened and a pudgy cop climbed out, Karl slipped the gun back into his pocket.

     “What's going on?” the cop said. Then he stopped dead in his tracks. “Holy cathe­drals, look at this.” He turned to his partner who had come around from the other side of the cruiser.

     Karl looked down. His hands were covered with blood. It was too late to wipe them off now.


© 2011 Bob Frey

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Added on August 31, 2011
Last Updated on August 31, 2011
Tags: mystery, crime fiction, police procedural, vampires, goth clubs, vampire cults, blood junkies, hollywood


Bob Frey
Bob Frey

Sandy, OR

Bob Frey loves to entertain, make people laugh and think, and, perhaps, shake them up a little. He was a copywriter for several top Los Angeles advertising agencies and received several awards for his.. more..