Devine Blood

Devine Blood

A Story by Kevin Chelsea
"

Vampier/s(sic) get their hands on the blood of an Angel. What happens? (reddit promt from /r/WritingPrompts)

"
    Father Pascal always had the most interesting church. The light in the dark, yes, he could actually call it that. He had been unceremoniously posted in the middle of nowhere, a little church on top of a hill. His church, hunched and fading away with the patrons, overlooked a dwindling town. Yet, his duty to god was always first in his heart. The bell would ring when it needed to, the good folks would come when they needed to.
    It was a nice system. He found that he rattled around the pews a little slower these days. The stretches between visitors, well wishers, and the faithful were getting further and further between. The townsfolk were dying or moving or just lost any faith in the almighty that they once had. The town was beginning to blow away, a few years earlier, the good Father Pascal decided he would remain. He'd be their marker, their signpost if they needed such.
    There was one man, stretch at that calling him such, who busted his way through the doors one evening. Father Pascal was sitting in the back, staring out a window thinking of years gone by. He gazed at the tops of far off mountains, the sun glowed orange and gave the snow caps that same orange flavouring. His mind flew those mountains, feeling the cold wind on his face. The warm cup of tea in his hands keeping him grounded. The tea went flying when a loud crash shook the entire building.
    Father Pascal stood, the cup hit the floor and tea spilled in a wide arc. Startled was a mild way to put it, he stiff legged a few steps towards the door. His brain vapour locked, he mumbled something about having to pick up the cup of tea. The rolodex of logic in head head rolled around again.
    "Good lord, Pascal. A car came through the doors and you're worried about spilled tea?" Father Pascal, still walking stiff legged, hands out in front of him, he turned to go see what the commotion was.
    He pulled the door open and popped his head out, at least there wasn't smoke. Down the length of the church, between the pews, he could see that the doors were swung open. One of them hanging by only the bottom hinge.
    "Hello this place!" Pascal's voice wavered, it rattled around the high, arching ceilings.
    In the back of his mind, he started to track a peculiar sound. Slurping, very loud slurping. He pursed his lips and wrung his hands, tipping on his toes to try and see what it was. A booming voice fell from the heavens and landed right in his head, it was his conscience. Get back there, you fool! This is a house of God! That was all the bucking up he needed, it yanked his spine straight and marched him back to see what was making the racket.
    The holy water font, a very pretty marble stand with carved bowl on top, was in the hands of a bedraggled man. He had it tilted to the ceiling like it was a drinking glass. Father Pascal had trouble moving it himself when he moved it to the side, he had to wrestle it on a drop cloth then drag that across the floor. Yet, here was a man lifting it like it weighed nothing.
    "Hey!" Pascal heard his voice say. Internal voices laughed, 'hey'? What is that?
    The man threw the font to the floor, Pascal felt the weight of it shake beneath him. The man wasn't exactly bedraggled. He was once immaculate, but his fine suit had been torn to shreds. A long overcoat was ripped so that the back was mostly streamers. But it was the eyes that Father Pascal saw first. They reached back into ages never seen and pulled Pascal into them.
    "You!" The man's voice ripped past every bit of holy schooling Pascal ever had. "What have you done to me?"
    "I..." prayers were tickering past Pascal's mind faster than they ever had, he had no idea about what to say, "I spilled my tea."
    The moment stretched out and they both stood there wondering what the hell that had to do with anything.
    "Where am I?" The man never broke contact with Pacal's eyes.
    "Horse Lake community church." The voice was nowhere near Pascal's normal range.
    "Hm." The man sat down in the nearest pew, looking as confused as Pascal felt.
    "You," Pascal tried not to shrink back when the man's eyes swung on him, "you drank the holy water."
    "Yes. Blood no longer did it, it was dirty."
    "Blood?"
    The man looked even deeper into Pascal, "sit, your old eminence, I have many things to confess."
    Father Pascal's mouth worked, but no words came out, he kept eyeballing the confessional and trying to make his hands point. "Well, okay." He sat beside the man.
    When Pascal sat down, the man got up to prop the doors closed, he spoke as he did. "The dark, your eminence, it does something to us now. Well, just me."
    Father Pascal felt his hand raising so he could ask a question, he put it back on his lap.
    "Old man, I have lived 10,000 life times, I'm the last of my clan. We have battled leagues of men. Across countries, through times when the only weapons were sticks and stones. That all changed, we started losing, we were the ones who went into hiding." The man leapt over the pew and sat beside Pascal.
    "Yes, back in the 13th century, biological warfare. The black plague ravaged us and we almost died. We survived though, we found a way. Since, it's been war, hundreds of years of it. The old ones, they're all gone. Died for their own damned need."
    Father Pascal only listened, the things he'd heard throughout the years prepared him for occasions where the mentally ill came to him. He tried to help those as best he could, but it was always left to professionals. They were a good car ride away though. The troubled souls that came to him were usually at an end, just wanted somewhere to lay down. Few occasions of that actually did come up, he would provide food and shelter until help could be reached. First, these people always had to pull the rope from the sky, the one that just hung up there, the one attached to nothing. All that took, most times, was Father Pascal's ear and maybe a few pats on the back.
    "I can see it in you, your eminence, you think I've traveled the winding road from the spark counter's fire. You humans," the man smiled, Pascal pulled back, something struck him about the smile, "crazy. You think I'm insane. You might be right. Half right. Even the blind chicken finds grains."
    The words the man spoke only floated on top of the image of the man's teeth when he'd smiled. There were teeth, but nothing else. Oh, if this man grins at me, I'll run mad, Pascal told himself. He wasn't light on his feet anymore, but he'd give it a go. Although, very soon he would find courage, a blazing and resplendent light would flare inside him. For the moment, he only listened, the only thing he knew how to do when listening to troubled souls.
    "Your entire lives are half truths. You might be right, but only halfway so, we came up with the plan. Hearing this is going to be a test of your faith," the man's ageless eyes slid over and bore into Pascal again, "we caught an angel. The amount of souls that had to pay, the insurmountable depth of corruption we'd grown inside your very institution of god. The people willing, they'd never be accepted anywhere besides this world. How about that, eminence, never to be forgiven? Even the worst depths of hells demons turning their backs? What would that buy?
    "An angel. Lured into a trap. Held by her own duty and free to go, but couldn't. Wouldn't. It was beautiful. The mere image of humanity she wore was an ugly mask compared to what she represented underneath. Not a word, she did not say a single word the entire time. The look she gave when I cut, elbow to wrist, was of pity. If she knew what we had to pay for our, " the man shook his fists in anger, "our hubris, she must be laughing. We all laughed to see her slipping away, the glow of her very soul dimming as we drank her very blood"
    "How dare you!" Father Pascal leapt to his feet, brandishing an accusing finger at someone who might only be telling stories he saw while passed out in a gutter.
    The man cocked his head and lifted an eyebrow, "that is exactly the point. We dared. The god, he has a strange sense of humour. Now sit."
    Father Pascal caught himself, he wanted to fly at the fool, let loose some vengeance on the worst kind of blasphemy. His mind reminding him that they were only stories, but the light inside him told him otherwise.
    "Sit, old man, there is the rest of the tale to hear and I believe it will quench that horrible sense of anger of yours. You see, we're beings who belong in the night, I came at the end of the day. Here, to a church, to a place that only speaks of me in the most profane tongue. Am I not pitiable for that alone? I'd banished myself from the night.
    "You see, two nights ago, something began to happen, the group of us. Seven of us, leaders of far stretching clans, began to pay for our act. The angel's blood changed us. The first night, three tried to hide away in our natural surroundings, the rest of us heard them suffer. The dark, the absence of light, no longer our ally. We had to stay in the light. The following night, two of the others, tried feeding on a nightwatchman. Their deaths were quick, burned from the inside, but the look on their faces.
    The man put his elbows on his knees, then covered his eyes with his palms.
    "The dark began to chase us. We were the last two, we were hiding in the light, praying for daytime. Who would listen to our prayers after what we'd done? No one. The other, I hadn't seen her since Paris, she thought she'd get away to the east, towards the sunrise. She took a car and left, far be it from me to tell her to live any kind of life. I seen her driving away with every light on that she could find. Do you see, your eminence? We're stripped of all we know and cast out into the light.
    The man leaned back and took a deep breath.
    "Last night, I spent huddled beside a very dim signal light beside a railroad. Trapped in darkness and dying of the starvation I didn't know how to quench. Listening to a lone voice sail out of the dark and mock me with prayer. Day came and I wandered, all day until I saw a steeple, if there was one place I might be safe. I raced the night to your door and I won. The very soul of me wasn't burnt away for crossing the threshold, was I forgiven? Instinct lead me to your water. Am I cursed with this new life? To depend on you?" The man's story ended with his eyes asking Father Pascal a question he didn't know how to answer.
    "My son, it is not for me to-"
    The hall echoed with laughter. "I am not your son."
    Pascal continued, "-not for me to say, I'm to serve, God. If it comes to helping my fellow man, then it is duty to help. Are you a man?"
    "We shall see. Father, fetch more water." The man waved his hand.
    Father Pascal, looked out the church windows. There was to be a moon that night, but the night was dark as he'd seen it since the snows of winter. He stood and walked to the door, he could see the tea had dried. Time stretched out long as he looked at the cup laying on the floor. Pascal looked back and saw the man grinning at him over his shoulder, still sitting at the pew. All doubt about who, and what, the man was left Pascal's mind. The man's smile reached to his ear, lips stretched back to show teeth that belonged to something would never find home in a house of God. Pascal's hand was right beside the light switches that could turn out every light in the place. It was habit to push them all down before making his way to his humble cabin in the back. Father Pascal thought of his little church, he wondered if it should continue to be the light in the dark.

The end.

© 2013 Kevin Chelsea


Author's Note

Kevin Chelsea
http://www.reddit.com/r/WritingPrompts/comments/1ghf6r/devine_blood/cakcwic

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Wow, this was excellent.

You write with style and originality. The very idea of this was worth the read. Better though, that you wrapped it up in such a package. An instant favorite.

Thank you for entering this into my contest. I can tell you now it's a finalist.

-Caradoc

Posted 6 Years Ago


Different. Leaves one asking questions.

Posted 6 Years Ago



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Added on June 18, 2013
Last Updated on June 18, 2013

Author

Kevin Chelsea
Kevin Chelsea

IR#4, The Cariboo, Canada



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