Chapter One

Chapter One

A Chapter by Sam Shepard

Chapter One

 

It has been such a very long time; I can still remember the night it all began seeing it vividly in my mind. I was once like these inferior pathetic creatures called humans. I was born in the small village on the outskirt of Brasov in Romania in the year 1700.

      I did not believe in the vampires back then. I was taught the Holy Bible by strict demanding monks, with an authoritarian religious doctrine. Even back then, I was skeptical. Stories of vampires were meant for our parents and grandparents to get us to obey them. They instilled fear in me until I grew into my late teens when I learned they were just tales to frighten little children. On that one terrifying, fateful night, I came face to face with these one of these wives’ tales.

      That night, the air chilled us to the core of our very souls. Food was very scarce most were starving. While we lay huddled together �" sleeping, a loud bloodcurdling scream filled our little village. A woman’s scream filled the night. I woke up in shivering fright.

“Father, Father what was that?” I cried out.

Running towards the front door my father looked back over his shoulder, shouted out “Stay here Darius!”

      I bolted from my bed and ran to my window just in time to see my father racing from our house, disappearing into the starless, bitter night. Smashing my hand against the wall, “I am not a child anymore Father!” I screamed. I turned rushed towards my door, snatching my sword from my table, gripping it tightly in my hand and raced out side after him.

      As I raced from my house, I saw torchlights assembling in the village square I rushed towards them. As I entered the square, I pushed my way towards the middle of the crowd suddenly I felt a strong grip on my shoulder; I turned anxiously to see it was my father a muscular man deep dark tan skinned and a square-jawed face. His wavy dark brown hair fell off his shoulders his steel gray eyes piercing at me, “I told you to stay home Darius,” he said in a forbidding voice.

      “Father, I am a man, when are you going to stop treating me like a child” I said looking straight into his face. His face grew cold and stern as he began to open his mouth when abruptly the man next to him asked, “Where did that screaming come from?” “It sounded like it came from near the blacksmith shop,” shouted another villager.

      Without a word, my father’s face swelled with pride then a thundering slap on my back as he laughed. We turned and to race towards the blacksmith shop side by side with our weapons at the ready. As we turned the corner of the blacksmith shop, we stopped dead in our tracks by the gruesome sight that beheld us. Lying there lifeless in a pool of blood on the cold wet snow was a body. Cautiously the crowd walked towards the body their torches held high.

      A loud gasp came from the crowd as one screamed out “It is Caterina”! Pushing frantically through the crowd was Demetru our town blacksmith a stocky grayed hair man forced his way towards the body his bluish green eyes frozen wide in terror.

      Horrified at the sight before him Demetru screamed as he fell to his knees. Sobbing hysterically, Demetru gathered up her body pulling her close to his chest, “Caterina, no my Caterina!” “It cannot be you.” We crowded around him, her body, visible from the light of our torches, our eyes fixed on her body. Her throat looked like a large animal had torn it out. I could not fathom what Demetru was going through, all I could do was lay my hand upon his shoulder as I started to turn away.

      Suddenly from the shadows, a growl resonated, a growl not of this world. It was a low, deep demonic sound. It sent shivers thru our very souls swiftly the men raised their torches high into the night sky, revealing my worst childhood fear, a repulsive, nauseating creature from hell. There standing in front of us, engulfed by the light from our torches with Caterina’s blood dripping from her mouth was a vampire.

      Her grave attire shown white in the light cast by our torches it shimmered as only silk could. The once fine garment’s bodice stained bright crimson. The vampire’s golden hair hung around its contorted face, blood and bits of Caterina’s flesh clung to the strands. From around her neck hung a medallion, in the center the Coat of Arms of Louis Baston, Duke of Brasov. She was once a tall, beautiful woman of French nobility.

      The vampire in life had been Elisabeta Maria Baston, the duke’s eldest daughter.  Loved throughout the countryside for her gentle heart, yet there she was licking her lips leisurely, savoring the blood of Caterina. My heart pounded in my chest as my pulse quickened. Rage overtook my body at the sight before me.

      I let out a loud yell as I attacked her with my sword. Elisabeta’s eerie laughter rang out as she charged me. Her strength and speed stunned me as she managed to dismantle my every assault on her.  She grabbed me by my shirt and threw me against a wall as if I were a child’s rag doll. Her strength overpowered me. I slid down the wall into the snow gasping for every breath I could. I fought to regain my composure I stood up ready to fight again.

      “Do you really think you can defeat me you little pitiful excuse for a mortal?” taunted Elisabeta, as she saw me standing there I tighten my grip upon my sword. “I shall defeat you,” I swore. Her laughter fell silent as she charged at me once more. I stood my ground sword at the ready, my eyes fixated on her.

      Without warning, a loud hiss came from her mouth as she exposed her fangs. With the swiftness of a lion, Elisabeta lunged at me, I stood there firmly, sword at the ready. “Back to hell with you b***h!” I shouted as I swung my sword with all my might. I watched as my sword divided her head from her body in a great arc.

      I watched as her head fell on to the snow, as if in slow motion, immediately turning into a decaying corpse. Within seconds, her entire body fell into the snow no longer a vision of French nobility but a shriveled decaying corpse.

      I fell to one knee vomiting profusely. My father raced to my side slowly he helping me to my feet as the crowd gathered around us. The other men in our village looked at me strangely with their brows raised, their faces frozen with awe astonished by my accomplishment as they slowly crept by me and started to gather up Caterina’s body.

       Demetru sluggishly rose to his feet, staggering towards me. He stretched out his strong arms grabbed me firmly in them and kissing my cheek as he wept, “Thank you Darius, thank you for killing that monster that took my Caterina you are the first man from our village to have killed a vampire.” All I could do as we made our way to the center of our village was hold him as he wept.

      As the crowd made its way to the center of the village, my fellow villagers were cheering calling me a hero. My father made his way to my side, placing his arm around me, with pride bursting from his body bellowed “You are a hero my son I am so proud of you.” “I do not feel like a hero father, all I feet is numb and drained,” I replied as I laid my head upon him as watched the small group of villagers walk slowly passed me carrying the body of Caterina.

      Over the course of the next several months, there were many vampire attacks in our village. Men, women and even children were vanishing from their homes and families, only to return three nights later -- as vampires. They became these unholy and undead creatures lusting for the blood of humans. These vampires were stronger, faster and deadlier than anything I have ever seen before in my life. I loathed their entire race.

      Night after night, we would gather in the village square arming themselves with torches and weapons. We would organize ourselves into several hunting parties, embarking on to hunt these undead creatures and return them to from where they came from �" hell. We learned very fast how to fight and destroy them. Early on, we learned that by cutting their heads off it would result in their instant death. The war against the vampires had begun. I had started it.

      For many bloody months and years, the battle raged on in the hills and countryside of Romania. The vampires grew in their numbers no one knew where they came from. Were they creations of some evil demon from hell or from Satan himself? Were they creatures from another world who came here to destroy the human race? As of yet I did not have the answers.

      Over the course of this war, I saw many of my friends and fellow villagers had turned into these undead gruesome demons. These vampires were ravaging and plundering all over Romania. We learned much about these demons. We learned they are able to walk and function in the daylight. It does not kill them or have them burst into flames as the monks once taught us. It simply makes them vulnerable and it drastically diminishes their powers whatever the source of their superhuman strength and speed is, sunlight obliterates it. This is why they hunt and attack at night. It is when they are the strongest.

      We continued to hunt them across the Romanian lands. We killed as many as we could. Nevertheless, more came. If we killed ten, fifty would show up the next night if we killed a hundred then a thousand would show up. We were severely outnumbered we needed more information what we needed was a prisoner.



© 2011 Sam Shepard


Author's Note

Sam Shepard
I am looking forward to honest straight forward reviews and advice.

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Reviews

You have a good start to your story, but I think that this could use some work. I'd love to see more details being exhibited. How about adding in a layout of the town? You say that Caterina's body is found in snow, but is it storming out, or is it a light flutter? Are the temperatures tolerable?

I don't find it really believable that after finding the body and Darius discovering the vampire that he is the only one to have seen it, let alone kill it. With Elisabeta being so close to the group, why didn't the rest of the men go to investigate when they hear her growling? You stated clearly that hear it and that they see her, but why do they all stand there as if they are cowards when Darius is fighting her. Unless, this sequence is meant to happen quickly before anyone can register that it's happening at all.

Perhaps adding some more action to the little battle scene would do well with keeping the reader more engaged.

There are some grammar mistakes through this whole passage, but that is an easy fix. I think you have a good start, but it does need some work.

Posted 9 Years Ago


Certainly has a hook. It always reeled me in and as I read I pictured every scene with vivid clarity. Stunning really...

Posted 9 Years Ago


1 of 1 people found this review constructive.


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Added on September 7, 2011
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Author

Sam Shepard
Sam Shepard

Cambridge, MD



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Prolude Prolude

A Chapter by Sam Shepard