Grave Four: Memories

Grave Four: Memories

A Chapter by Raevyne

   The almost-autumn chill in the air made me shiver slightly in my black, sleeveless top, despite the people on the sidewalk who jostled and bumped into me as I forged ahead through the crowd. Everyone else also appeared to want to seize the opportunity of this break in the rain storm. Not that I usually minded rain, but I realized that I hadn't eaten in two days and decided to take care of that matter sooner rather than later.
Once on the main street, the enticing scent food wafting over from several different vendors and booths. I caught sight of a Latino man selling hot dogs and waded out of the herd of pedestrians towards him. I order and paid for a hotdog with extra pickles, it reminded me of going to outdoor art fairs with my mother. We always got hot dogs with extra pickles for lunch, and more often than not, managed to drop most of them on the ground and ourselves. A familiar pang of sadness prickled at my heart, but I did my best to ignore it and move along down the street.
   After wandering for about an hour, munching on my overly-pickled prize, I noticed the buildings around me grew fewer and more run down, until I was strolling through a rather ratty-looking suburb. A few kids played ball in the street, some mothers gave me dirty looks from their porches, and dogs set up barking as I passed. I couldn't help but think of my own childhood home. At the far reaches of the neighborhood the ground banked steeply downward, giving way to a railroad track. Along the edge of the drop off was a line of stubby trees with over-proficient foliage, nestled among their roots were assorted beer cans and McDonald’s wrappers. I smiled wryly at the scene, with a bitter sense of familiarity as I plopped down of the damp grass and let my legs hang down the decline.
   It wasn't so long ago that a wild little girl with messy, black hair and freckles across her nose had raced through childhood playgrounds like this one, oblivious to the filth around her and the fact reality was waiting on the other side of the railroad ditch. Forgotten was the fact that she was looked down upon because Daddy was gone forever, and that she would have to go back to her white-trash neighborhood and working Momma and town full of people who spoke in that southern drawl that she just couldn't do. Yes, not so much time had passed since Momma and I finally picked up and got away from that stinking trap of a town. I still remember looking through the window of the car, back at the receding outline of the world I knew, with twelve-year-old eyes that had just begun to loose their gleam of innocence and sober with the weight of knowing.
  I remembered for the first time in weeks why I was here and what had happened before my suppressed existence in this city. For the first time in weeks, I sat and thought and let myself. I thought about Mother dying, how it was the last road sign on my wild suicide ride. She wasn't really all of my sadness, my depression that had been building up on needed one last tip-off, and she was just it, I was gone to the world. I thought about dying and then not being able to go all the way, I thought about Amadeus and every time he had lurked just out of my sight, and how his very name made me shiver with a sense of unknown.
   I stared at the tracks below me, briefly considering rolling down the hill on to them and letting the train do my dirty work. Until half-way through that thought, I realized something. I did not really want to die. I had no idea where the feeling came from after my seemingly unbreakable misery and frustration suicide attempts...but now I felt a unbidden urge stopping me. What had changed? Amadeus? The very thought of him terrified me. Yet, the complete mystery and dedication to "saving me from myself" was strangely seductive. Maybe he had accomplished something of whatever his goal is.
  The clouds above me, slightly less smoggy than the ones above my apartment, turned to pinkish-purple as the sun made it's final descent beyond the horizon. Farther off, two dogs were having a barking match until a man's voice yelled something, one of them yelped, and they were silent. A newspaper cover tumbled by in the lazy breeze, conveniently landing on my face. Mentally, I noted my likely resemblance to a hobo. I groaned inwardly at the thought of movement, then snatched it off. Looking idly at the page, I saw it was yesterday's. I was about to toss it back on it's windy way, when I noticed the headline, or more like the photograph below it. The piggy, colorless eyes of the man who'd attacked me stared back out from their black and white scenery. A cold sensation filled my chest as I read the article. The man...well most of him...had been found on a bridge near the city center. In addition to being mutilated past the point of visual identification, his remains were almost entirely devoid of blood. The mortician was confused as to which happened first, as this point in the investigation.
   I tore my eyes away, sat up, and took several shaky breaths.  I didn't want to think about who might have done this, I didn't want such a ghastly murder to be in any way connected to me...but I had a terrible feeling that it was.
   The sudden sound of footsteps behind brought me mind back to the physical plane, and in surprise, I whirled around and leapt up off the grass. Standing not more than six feet away was a man. An unnervingly familiar man. As I stared back at him in rude shock, a prickling sensation traveled down my spine and the hair on the nape of my neck standing strait up.
   He was tall, about six-three, with long, wavy auburn hair tied back in a loose pony-tail. Several sunset-colored strands had come loose and fell forward to frame his impossibly pale, delicate-boned face. He wore a black long-sleeved dress shirt casually tucked into fitted, dark-colored pants, with non-descript leather boots. A pair of deep brown eyes met mine and I felt my very soul tingle with fear. He looked as though he could have stepped out of any time period in the last 500 years. He had the air of perfect ease, as if this shabby corner of the suburbs could have just as well been a black-tie dinner. The man's lips curled into a faintly devious smile.
   "Hello, Artemis."
   "Amadeus...." I whispered in shock, slowly backing away until I felt my foot meet the edge of the ravine. My heart speed up, I could hear the blood rushing, pounding through my head. I was uncomfortabley reminded of a night not so long ago when I balanced on the edge like this. Amadeus continued to smile in a unsettlingly calm manner, moving forward only to counter my moving away.
   "No need to be so frightened, love, You know I won't hurt you." He soothed, advancing slightly.
   I nervously eyed his movement like a rabbit, my whole body on edge. What happened to the dead man added a hint of menace to this seemingly perfect creature. I was in slight shock from really clearly seeing this being for first time. However the with the addition of my scare from the newspaper, I was currently more inclined to run from him than to thank him.
   "Now don't be like that...I am only here to talk, to explain...." Amadeus continued in his unwaveringly calm voice, making another move forward, slightly faster as if to keep me from countering.
   I let out a small, frightened noise and lost my balance in an attempt to move to the side. For a pivotal moment I swayed and almost tumbled down the side of the ditch, but Amadeus suddenly caught me by the waist. I blinked and hung there in his arms, stunned for a second, unable to comprehend how someone could move that fast. Amadeus looked down into my fearful face with a soft, slightly saddened look. His hands did not leave my waist.
   "H-how...." I managed to choke out..
   Amadeus’ expression darkened further. He paused before reluctantly responding. "I am not human like you, dear Artemis.'' I blinked again, trying to keep my mind blank. Oh no, this wasn't happening.
   ''Didn't you wonder how I was able to save you, twice? How I could find you and pull you back from the brink when all of your medical science couldn't have done a damn thing?" His tone was harsher. "Didn't you wonder why I have only come to you at night? I am dead, dead as you so dearly wanted to be. A Vampire."
   I gasped, loosing the tenuous control I had, shock then panic coursing my mind. No, no there was no way this was happening. I struggled to remove myself from Amadeus's grasp, squirming and twisting wildly, not caring if I caused myself to fall again. He did not give in to my protests, simply held my flailing body with a grasp like steel until I was settled by loss of breath.
   "Shhh...." He stroked my hair as I trembled. Dead? Vampire? The words bring up another wave of confusion.   They played in my mind as I tried to compose myself. I could only recall cheesy Hollywood gothic, nothing that seemed remotely close to the being that was holding me in it's arms. Amadeus moved away, holding me at arm's length so he to look directly into my eyes.
   "I promised I would not harm you, Artemis, Vampire or not."
   "It's not real." I whimpered softly "It's not possible."
   Amadeus sighed.
   "Oh, but it is."
   Without a word further, their was a ripping noise. Two black, feathered masses began to spread from behind his shoulders, growing upward and out, and as I watched in mute amazement, a pair of onyx wings were formed. They arched high over Amadeus's head, curving gracefully downward into pointed tips. He flapped them slightly as if stretching, the movement making my hair flutter around my face. Not a word, never breaking his gaze. Amadeus only continued to look into my eyes, then without warning, clasped my waifish body to him again and began to beat his wings with powerful strokes, and we were lifted off the ground until he was...flying. Farther and farther away from the earth we soared. The cold wind whipped against me, stinging fiercely even though I took no notice. I was scarcely aware of anything at that moment. Amadeus looked down.
   "Do you believe me now?"

   I fainted.

© 2009 Raevyne

Author's Note

Please understand that I began this years ago as a very depressed preteen. But I welcome positive and negative feedback.

My Review

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I was very inpreased by the voice of this. It speaks out to me and gives great imagery. Great work and keep it up!

Posted 10 Years Ago

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Added on September 21, 2009
Last Updated on September 21, 2009



Baltimore, MD

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