This is Part 3 of the 12 part vampire series: Addicted to the Abyss. You can read Part 4 here: http://www.bloodywhisper.com/addicted-abyss-part-4-apartment/ Jonah remembered someone from his past and contacts him. When Mallory finds him and tries to help, he discovers that the vampire is disoriented, confused, and very, very hungry.
Shit. Shit. Shit!
What the hell was that?
Oh my god. Oh my god. Ohmygod!
Noooo! No. nonononononononono… I won’t.
I won’t. I won’t. I won’t.
I won’t do this.
Not to him.
No. No! No!
Please. No! Not him! Not him!
Something slammed into the back of my head. Cool sludge ran down the back of my neck, down my ears, into my eyes. Sharp bits, slimy bits.
I bit him.
What’s wrong with me? I tried to bite him. I tried to drink his blood. I didn’t want to hurt him. I didn’t. But I did. And I wanted to do it so badly.
“Kill me. Please, God, just kill me!”
“No,” he said. “No more death.”
I couldn’t see. Something cold. Slimy. Thick. Sludge. Running in my eyes. I choked on the smell of burning flesh. Am I burning?
“Focus. Try to remember,” he said.
“Can’t see,” I said, my voice hoarse, weak. A weak horse. That’s all I am now. A broken-down mule.
He wiped the sludge off my face; black thick oil on a towel.
We were in a hotel room. I didn’t recognize it.
How many of these have I been in now? Don’t know. Not sure.
“Better?” he asked. His voice was familiar. Where have I heard it before?
“No. Where are we?”
“I know that. Just tell me where damn it.”
“Just outside of Denver. Took me forever to track you down. You kept moving. You’d call and ask me to meet up, and then you wouldn’t be there. I was waiting months…” he shook his head. “I’m not letting you out of my sight again. I can help you. We can fix this. I can help you get better.”
“You sure about that?”
“…no. But I have to try.”
“My arms are stuck.”
He chuckled. “They’re tied behind your back. Are you really that out of it still?”
“What’s my name? Do you remember yet?”
“No. I know you or something?”
“You don’t look familiar.”
“It’ll come back to you. Just give it time.”
I struggled. My arms were numb, my stomach was on fire. My legs were weak. He tied my legs to the chair. Arms too. Couldn’t move my hands around to slip them out of the knots. He even tied my thumbs together. Thorough. Annoyingly thorough. I couldn’t get enough leverage to break free. I needed to get out. I needed to FEED. I could feel the darkness inside, starting to boil up. The toothy maw of a beast threatened to swallow me whole if I didn’t eat soon. It hurt. My body screamed for blood. For red-hot delicious lifeblood.
My stomach growled. I got light-headed. My skin crawled. I needed to get free. I needed to eat. I needed it. If I didn’t get it, I’d die.
“Let. Me. Go.”
“No. Not yet. Not until you tell me something. You give me what I want, I give you what you want. Understand?”
Clever. We should eat him. Rip out his heart, squish it in our hands, pour the blood in our mouth. Like an over-ripe peach.
I could hear his heart beating, pumping blood through his veins. Woosh, woosh, woosh. I drooled. My teeth ached. I licked my lips, stared at his neck. It was so close. I could see his pulse beating under his skin, right beneath his jaw line. That was his jugular. I could almost taste his fresh blood, could see it slipping through the arteries and veins, red gold, the fluid of life.
God did I want it. I wanted it more than anything. I strained my neck and body forward, pulling against the ropes. They were starting to creak from the force. If I could just…
He snapped his fingers in front of my face. Once. Twice.
I glared at him.
“Focus,” he said and pushed my face back. If his hand got just inches closer to my mouth, I could bite him. God. I was so hungry.
“Why are you doing this?” I asked.
He smiled. I couldn’t tell if he was mocking me or not, and that pissed me off. “I’m not teasing you. I’m trying to get you to communicated properly. I’ve had a hell of a time getting you to talk to me.”
“How long have I been here?”
“A week or so. Tell me something, what happened that night?” he asked.
“What night? You know how many nights there are? Too many to count. What night, where?”
“At the bar. Think. What happened?”
“What bar? What are you talking about?”
“San Francisco. Three years ago. You and I were there. On a date. Do you remember?”
“No.” A black pit was growing in my belly, spreading out to my torso. I could feel my body dying. The cells rotting away. If I didn’t eat soon, it would take over, I’d hurt him and devour him and then…no. No. Please. No. Not him. I didn’t want to. Something told me that if I did, I would never forgive myself.
“Look buddy. It’s getting hard to think. OK? If you were smart, you’d loosen the ropes and run like hell and pray that I found someone else to snack on. I can’t hold it back much longer. I can’t. I’m not lying.”
He frowned. “You’re sweating. Your eyes are dilated. Your breath is shallow and fast. Are you going through withdrawal?”
The beast in me growled. It was tensing up, curling around my spine, about ready to shoot up into my head and take complete control. For some reason, I didn’t want it to do that. For once, I didn’t want to stop thinking. It hurt. God did it hurt. But, if I let it do that…
“Let me go!”
“Not yet. Listen to me. Look me in the eyes and listen to me.” He raised my chin, the warmth of his hand seeped into my skin. His eyes. Brown. Warm. Kind. I knew those eyes. My heart sank. No. Oh no. It really is him. It’s him. And I want to devour him whole. “Remember me now?”
“Don’t look away. Stay looking at my eyes.”
I blinked, tried to shake my head but he had a firm grip. He made me keep looking him in the eye.
“Listen closely. Try to remember. You and I. We were out, getting drinks. We…had an argument. You ran out of the bar, and then there was screaming. I thought you had run out into traffic. I ran after you, and when I found you, you had collapsed in an alleyway. You were pale as death, blank-faced. The side of your throat had been ripped out, something bit you. Something big. You weren’t able to speak, barely able to move. I called an ambulance. Rode to the hospital with you, filled out your paperwork. They said it looked bad. I stayed as long as I could, but I was tired. I needed to eat and sleep. They assured me that you would be well looked after. I trusted them. I came back in the morning, and you were gone. You killed your nurse, broke the window and jumped out. Do you remember any of that?”
“No. I don’t.” Shit. Did that happen?
God he smelled great. Like lamb chops.
I growled, bit my lower lip hard enough to break the skin. Foul-tasting clammy fluid seeped out of the wound. I spat it out and glared at him, barring my sharp teeth.
“I’m going to devour you, bathe in your blood after I bleed you dry.” I laughed. “You stupid fuck. Don’t you get it? You can’t save me. I’m already dead.”
He punched me in the face, cut his fist on my teeth. He grimaced. Shook his hand. Must’ve hurt.
Oh God, I could taste it. His blood. I shivered. I wanted it. I wanted him. I wanted to feel alive, to feel full of that warm glowing fire. I needed it, like a junkie needed a fix. I needed his blood.
“You taste good,” I said, wriggling the chair I was tied to, trying to get out of the ropes. Trying to find a weak spot, anything, to get free so that I could jump on him and rip the skin off his throat with my teeth.
“Stop struggling. It’ll only make it worse.”
“You’re starting to smell pretty damned tasty over there.”
“Try to remember that night. What happened when you ran out of the bar? What did you see? What did you smell? What did you hear? Can you remember anything of the attack? Anything at all, nothing is unimportant here.”
“I TOLD you, I don’t remember. Now let me out. I’m starving.”
“Not until you try to remember.”
“I’m going to peel your skin off like you’re an orange. I’m going to peel it right the fuck off, then slice open your veins and drink you until I am so full, I can’t even stand.”
He punched me again. But this time, it was in the throat. I choked. Gasped for air. Bucked in the chair, tried to rip free of whatever the hell he tied me up with. What did he tie me up with? Ah. One of those fabric mesh strap-down mover’s straps, with woven nylon fabric, like a seat-belt. Strong, durable. Hard has hell to cut, let alone rip apart.
I’m stuck. I’m trapped, I’m trapped. I can’t get out. It hurts. It hurts so much. My stomach feels like I chewed broken glass. My insides are full of knives and razor blades.
“It. Hurts. I need to feed. I need food. Please! Make it stop. Just make it stop.”
“You can bear it a bit longer, can’t you? Just try to remember my name. Try that at least. Then I’ll feed you.”
“Let me go,” I growled. That voice. That can’t be mine. It just can’t. It’s….WRONG. Somehow.
“Tell me what happened.”
Tied down. Collared. Chained up. Like an animal. Fucking bastard.
“I’ll kill you.”
He laughed. “Probably. But not if I can bring you back to yourself first.”
“What the hell does that mean?”
“Jonah, you called me right? You called me and asked me for help.”
That’s why I called him. Why I was here.
“Mallory,” I whispered.
“Your name is Mallory.”
“That’s right. How about yours? Can you remember your name?”
Couldn’t focus. I could smell him. Heard his heart pumping blood through his warm body. Delicious. I bet he tasted soooo good. I shuddered, just imagining his blood running down my throat. So warm, so yummy. Better than sex.
“Hungry. Need to feed. Blood. Need blood. Now.”
Slapped in the face.
“I’m right here.”
I looked up into brown eyes. Cow eyes. Soon to be dead eyes. I remembered…I remembered her…no…not her. Him.
HIM. He killed you. Kill him.
Lies. Lies! Lies! Lies! Lies! It wasn’t him! It wasn’t!
Hungry. Stomach growled. Starving. Food. There. In front of you.
Make it bleed. Kill it, tear it apart. Kill it! Kill it!
“No. Not until you remember.”
“Please. It hurts.”
“Oh god make it stop. Just kill me. Christ! Just fucking kill me!”
I strained and struggled and the chair tipped over. I fell to my side.
Chair fell over. On the floor. Still tied. Still stuck. Can’t. Can’t move. Bastard. Prick. Son of a bitch cunt whore! Let me go! Moved. He moved. Close.
I heard him kneel down. A hand on my head.
“Shhh. Relax. Relax. I’ll give you what you want.”
“I smell it! I smell it. Give. Give!”
Hand in front of my lips. I bit down, hard, pop his skin like it’s a cherry tomato, his blood oozes into my mouth. I swallowed. I didn’t let go. I kept drinking. Closed my eyes. Let the warmth flow through me. Let it calm the screaming pain. Ease the agony.
The razor blades in my stomach disappeared, the acid in my veins turned to liquid gold.
I sighed in pleasure. Listed my head back, closed my eyes, let the soothing warmth rush over me like a soft spring rain. Ran my tongue along the palm of his had while I sucked.
He gasped and pulled away.
I leaned forward, mouth seeking his wound, finding nothing but cold air. He leaned down, and wiped his blood on my lips. His blood. On my lips. I sucked his fingers, licked them, ran my tongue up and down and around them and he sighed.
I shuddered. Wanted him to rub his blood all over me. ALL OVER MY BODY.
“It’s OK now Jonah. It’s all right. The pain is gone. I’m here for you.”
Couldn’t break free. Wanted to. If I could, I’d be all over him.
I was lying on my side on the floor, sucking his hand, slowly, lazily now. He gently pulled his hand away and I lay there, content, relaxed, his blood gave me a good, mellow high. A slight rush and then everything melted away. All the worries, all the pain, everything.
He got up, walked to the bathroom and came back, wrapping a towel around his hand.
It was bleeding under there. Blood seeping into the terry cloth.
“It’s going to waste like that. Your blood should be going into me, not that damn towel.”
“Is that so?” he asked. “You bit me a hell of a lot harder than I thought you would. I’ll be more careful next time.”
“Who are you?”
He smiled sadly. “Forgotten already? You called me here. Remember?”
“No.” I shook my head. “I didn’t.”
“Yes you did. It wasn’t that long ago.”
I frowned. His face went in and out of focus. Fuzzy, not fuzzy, fuzzy, not fuzzy, fuzzy. I closed my eyes. Sighed. Waited for the high to settle in, for it to mellow out.
“You look different,” he said.
That got my attention. I didn’t even know what I looked like anymore.
“You seem tired. Haggard. When was the last time you slept?”
I shrugged. “When I got tired.”
“You get tired a lot?”
“What happens to you then? When the sun comes up?”
I shuddered. Closed my eyes, shook my head. “Black out. Wake up later and after I’ve…”
“After you’ve what? Jonah, talk to me.”
If I could move I would roll over and not have to look at him. He cares. The son of a bitch actually cares about me.
“You shouldn’t be doing this. I’ll kill you when I get loose.”
There’s a look on his face, in his eyes. He was scared and sad. It made me feel bad, wanting to hurt him earlier. I felt bad about that for some reason.
And that scared me. I was afraid for him, of what I would do to him. I couldn’t help it. I wouldn’t be able to stop myself. And he’d be dead.
“If you don’t stop me. One day, I’ll kill you.”
“So you say.”
“Mallory.” Christ. Where the hell did I even meet this guy? I didn’t even remember that. “You can’t trust me.”
“You just can’t!” I screamed at him.
He flinched, backed away. Fear lit up his eyes. His heart pounded faster. I could see his pulse beating in his neck, his blood pumping harder through his veins.
“You can’t trust me! I can’t even trust myself. You have to believe me Mallory, you can’t do this! Just kill me and get it over with.” I looked away from his face, stared at the floor. “We’d all be better off if you did.”
“No. I don’t believe you. That’s not how it has to be. Everyone has addictions, and they all have their cures. This is something that you can fight Jonah. You can beat this.”
“This isn’t an addiction. It’s a God damned curse you stupid son of a bitch! Now fucking kill me already!” My voice broke, the pain cracked through the words.
Scared, screwed. The same really when you think about it.
“You think better you know, after you’ve fed. I can actually talk to you. Like we’re talking now. It doesn’t last long though. A few hours at most.”
I eyed him funny. “What’s that supposed to mean?”
“After you’ve fed. You can focus. You have a moment of clarity. Don’t you? That’s when you called me wasn’t it?”
“When you called me three weeks ago, you had just fed hadn’t you?”
Three weeks? No fucking way. I had just done that, hadn’t I?
“I think so. I…don’t remember.”
Shit. I was screwed. If my blackouts were lasting that long. If I did stuff while not myself for longer and longer periods of time, after a while I– my stomach dropped. I felt like I was going to be sick.
After a while I wouldn’t even think any more. I wouldn’t be me at all. I would be something else.
I sank into the floor and tried to disappear into it. My head thunked into it with a solid thud. I kept hitting it against the floor, over and over again.
Shit, shit, shit.
“What’s wrong? Jonah? Talk to me.”
“That’s not my name.”
“Then what is your name? What should I call you?”
“I…I don’t know. I don’t remember.”
“Well, Jonah is what you told me to call you, when we first met.”
“When was that?”
“Five years ago. In San Diego.”
California? But there weren’t any X’s in California on my map.
“You seem confused.”
“I don’t remember being in California. It’s not marked off on the map.”
“This one?” he asked and picked it up off the side table.
“Yeah. That one.”
I eyed the towel wrapped around his hand. I must not have bit him very deeply, it wasn’t bleeding through very much. Just in a few spots. I could smell it.
“It happens.” Mallory unfolded the map, it was tattered and frayed along the fold lines and covered in splatters of blood and ink. He looked it over and held it up so I could see it.
“You’re right. There isn’t an X in California. None.” He sounded surprised. “Huh.”
“What do you mean huh? That’s MY MAP. I can read the names of the places on there. I know the big one on the west coast is California. There never were any X’s there.”
“That must mean that you weren’t…”
“I wasn’t what? What do you know? Tell me.”
“Not much. I don’t think you’re in any condition to hear any of what I do know though.”
“No. You tell me now. Before I black out again. I need to know. Where do I know you from? What’s happening to me? Why can’t I stop this?”
“I don’t know if we can stop it. But if you stay here with me, I may be able to help you control it. It might take a while, but with constant care I’m sure that I can.”
“Just when do you plan to sleep?” I asked.
He smiled. “During the day. Just like you.”
Like me? What does that make me then?
A memory flashed in my head. I’m little, holding the crayon in a fist, writing in squiggly ugly lines. J O N A. I always forgot the H.
“What is it?” Mallory asked.
“My name. I think I remember what it is. It’s Jonah, right?”
“Right. See? You’re starting to do better already.”
I yawned. My body was relaxed. Belly full. Content. My eyelids heavy.
“Dawn is coming. Tired. Sleep now.”
“I’ll see you when you wake up then.”
Dark time. Light outside. Dreamless sleep.
Voices from the Abyss beckon.
Come closer, come closer they whisper.
The nightmare’s still there no matter what. Isn’t it John?
That’s not my name.
It’s not? You look like a John to me. Selling your body on the streets. Ought to be ashamed of yourself.
Red eyes. Teeth like razors sink into my neck, shred it apart. Black non-blood seeps from a jagged gash ripped across a wrist with razored teeth.
Don’t want to. No! Don’t! Don’t make me!
I gagged. I choked. I kicked. I screamed. Nothing. Nothing gets the taste out. Nothing stops that taste from coming back. Thick black oil for blood. Non-blood tastes like ashes dipped in wine. Like fire behind my eyeballs roaring in my head. Nothing gets it out. The taste of undeath. Nothing but the blood.
I woke up to a scream.
Mallory was screaming.
I had his neck in my hands. His fingers clawed at my arms, his legs kicked at mine. His face was turning red. The whole room was turning red. Deep black sludge oozed from the scratches on my arms. I stared at it. It was so slow. I have oil in my veins.
I dropped him.
Oil. Not blood.
I backed away.
“Shit. Shit. Shit. Shit!”
Have to get it out. Have to get it out of me. But how…Matches on the bed-stand. Oil burns. I’ll burn it out. It’s the only way to be sure.
“Stop!” Mallory screamed and coughed.
I lit the match and brought it down to my non-blood. To the oily black sludge that was seeping out of my skin.
Is it my skin? Don’t know. Not sure. But it’ll burn. Everything burns. Everything.
Stupid bastard knocked the match away. I tried to light another one and he swatted the matchbook out of my hand. I snarled at him. Teeth sharp for the kill. I felt them grow longer, thinner, sharper. Mouth full of razor blades and promises of death.
He took a step back, his eyes wide. Deep purple bruises on his neck. A gash above his eye. The chair and the restraints were torn apart. Must’ve done that when I woke up.
“You’re bleeding,” I said, licked my lips, and smiled.
He shivered and backed towards the door.
“So are you.” His voice shook in fear. I shook in anticipation. This was going to be better than sex.
“Run,” I said. “Run for me, Mallory. I want to taste your fear.”
He backed up to the wall near the bed, and his hand reached behind his back, I could hear something hard slide out from under the side table.
“Run little Rabbit!” I laughed and lunged at him.
“No,” he said and pulled out a crossbow and fired.
I could see it move but I couldn’t do anything to stop the bolt from sinking into my chest. Nothing. Not one damned thing. It pierced my heart. A jolt of pain ran up my spine and my entire body froze. Paralyzed, I fell to the floor. I couldn’t move. I couldn’t blink. Nothing. Pain seared my chest, through to my back. It was getting worse by the minute. And I couldn’t move to pull it out.
“I’m sorry Jonah, I had no choice.” He knelt next to me. Kissed my cheek. Tears welled up in his eyes. “I’m so sorry,” he said and hit the crossbow bolt, shoving it in deeper. Something pulled all the muscles in my body taught and I stiffed up like an ironing board, my eyes rolled back in my head, and I passed out.