The hot searing pain ran threw my cold body, I gasped uncontrollably he latched onto me, his fingernails digging into my arms, I couldn’t cry out, I was frozen to the spot by my attacker,
‘You are not afraid to die’ the soft voice spoke to me,
I opened my mouth, but no words came,
‘You have lived your life, seeking me, why?’
I didn’t answer, I couldn’t
I began to feel sick.
Feeling numb now.
Was I still standing, no I was lying down now, but not on the ground, not on the cold cement paving out in the alley.
No, I was inside now, on a bed, some place, feeling so warm, the pain had gone; now my attacker was running his long fingers threw my damp hair. I was breathed deep, & opened my eyes, my vision was blurry. I felt the warmth of the fiercely light fire on my face, my sight return, & I had to breathe again there he was in an armchair, just a little away from the bed, he was handsome, his whole pale face was still like an ivory sculpture, his hair was black as midnight, tight back in a ponytail, he was reading a book, if I didn’t know better, I would say he was dead.
But I did know better, he looked up & straight at me,
He smiled gently & stood up, he was tall lean, but not lanky.
He sat down on the bed, close beside me.
‘I have taken some blood, but not enough to kill you…. You know who I am?’
I nodded, ‘You are Xavier Madeira, you belong to the Hellas clan, you have been in these parts of the country for a number of years,’ I spoke softly & well manned,
He smiled at me.
‘You know much about me & mine Ruth-’ He said walking around the bed, folding his arms almost hugging him,
‘Yet you haven’t exposed us. Why?’
‘I don’t plan to; I just wanted to investigate you & your kind, for my own ….fulfillment,’
I lifted myself up to a sitting position, to look at him more closely,
He stopped in his tracks & looked at me.
‘I do not mean to be intrusive; I just wanted to know if there was more to life, than my own,’
He smiled & nodded,
‘I believe you & so does my breed.’ His accent had a hinted of English, but there was French too.
‘Your breed? You mean they know about me?’
‘Oh yes, they are charmed by you, you know your bounds, yet you know that we can kill you, without even a second thought, but you are not afraid,’ he came to sit back down.
I felt the bandage on my neck, with my fingertips.
‘Even when I was bleeding you, all you had in your mind was, that you have been right about us.’
I felt my cheeks burn, under his intensive gaze.
‘I am at your home?’
‘Yes’ he sighed
‘You must me starving; I will have my cook make up something,’
‘I don’t want to be a bother…Mr.…’
He turned round ‘Xavier. Trust me she doesn’t cook often only for my friends who come round every so often… so your presence will be welcomed.’ He smiled at me endearing I had to look away, before he left,
I looked around the fabulous bedroom, I felt stronger as the minutes grew on, so I decided to walk round, since I was a long white nightdress quite like the one I had when I was a child.
I moved around the lovely dark room, light by candlelight that was carefully placed around the room, the curtains were the same as the carpet & the bedspread, deep ruby red, I looked on the mantelpiece, to see photos of people, & sketches of a women, a gasped to see to see myself, I was still taken back when he came back into the room,
He read my mind, & took the sketch of the mantelpiece he sat beside me on the bed.
‘I was sent to London by the kin, when you were asking questions bout the murdered girl down the docks,’’
‘‘It seemed you knew more than you were letting on, & that placed you in danger.’
‘With your kin?’
‘No with our enemies. My kin sent me to watch you.’ He looked down at his work & then back up to me, ‘Keep you safe.’
‘That was you, the vampire that attacked me in white chapel, you saved me from him?’
He simply nodded.
‘How long have you been following me?’ I asked getting lost in his mid blue eyes.
‘Since you saw your parents killed.'
I gasped, ‘That was almost 30 yrs ago!’
‘I had my orders,’
‘Even when I was put in a mental hospital?’
‘Even then.’ He smiled
I couldn't keep my eyes off his striking face,
His black goatee his thin Roman nose, his lush’s full lips.
‘You were the shadow man that came into my room, you the one who read stories to me, told me I wasn’t crazy’
He looked away,
‘I didn’t think you remember that.’ He said embarrassed.
‘I remember everything of the shadow man.’ I said softly,
He turned to me again I got lost in those eyes.
We must have spent the longest time looking at each other, when we were interrupted with a knocked with a polite knock at the door.
A friendly chubby women in a piney walked in with a tray of food,
Those smell so good were so good I couldn’t help but lick my lips,
‘Oh Miss Penny shore, please,’ Xavier said remembering why she was here; he was hoped off the bed, & took the tray from her.
‘This is wonderful, thank you; you may go home now,’
‘Thank you sir,’ she said curtsying,
‘Thank you,’ I said before she closed the door, she looked at me & smiled,
Xavier brought the tray on the large bed, next to me & sat opposite me,
She made a cottage pie, & green peas & for desert apple pie.
‘This is too much.’
‘Not for a woman who has walked the Yorkshire moors in midwinter to get to see if I was a vampire. Eat!’ he ordered with a smile, & as I listen to the shadow man that comforted me in dark hours, as he talked, I fell in love,
He told me about his life, & the life of a vampire, the Hellas rules, & guardians, like him, that keep the human life that knows about them, safe, from other less likable ones, from stealing their ideas, & plans, & secrets. & basically taking over.
‘That’s what you were doing to me, keeping me safe?’ I asked sitting by his feet, next to the fire which was still burning bright,
‘Yes, you see, the clan knew that the vampire killed your parents & what he planned to do, the question became did you know, what the vampire was there for?’
‘The plans for an invasion of Germany, he & the other leaders against Germany but what had that do to with vampire that killed him?’
‘That is a not so likeable Blood kin, he was helping the Nazis, and they needed to find out what England knew of their plans, so... Joseph-’
He knew I didn’t know the name, ‘stole the plans, but not before he killed your parents,’ he said with such sympathy in his eyes,
‘Did he know I was there?’
‘No, he thought you were away at you grandpa’s.’ he placed a hand on my bare shoulder, we both had a silent moment, in respect for them.
‘What going to happen to me now, will they be okay with me knowing for sure that there are vampires now?’
He smiled & kissed my forehead just like my farther used to,
‘Don’t worry like I said they are captivated by you, you are a wonder to them, & me, nothing will happen to you.’
There was still doubt in my mind, but before I knew what to say, he instructed me to sleep, it was late, & he didn’t want to keep me up,
He watched me get back into his large bed, & I watched him poke at the fire, but his face read as he was in deep thought.
I don’t remember much else; I drifted off to a sleepless dream, where for the first time my life I wasn’t in danger, for the first, I knew I was safe, in the shadow man bed.
But I do remember a kiss, I deep one, did I dream it, I didn’t know, his lips was as if tiny feather were brushing against my lips, our tongues, like our spirits in entwined,
I woke early; there was no sign of him. The fire was out & my clothes were now dry, & smelt of jasmine, I put them on in deep thought about the kiss, was this start of something? Something brilliant, something that made sense?
I walked to the end of the landing, I knocked on the door, that was facing the stairs, there came no answer, so quietly expecting to see him asleep I opened the door, but the bed hasn’t been slept in, my heart began to beat faster, what had happen, I rushed down stairs panicking up my skirt as to move quicker, I rushed threw the lovely pattern hall to the kitchen to see nothing but a cooker, a sink & the wooden table in the middle of the room with a note in the centre, with a satchel weighting it down, I picked up the note & read, my heart sank knowing that I was once again alone.
‘My love Ruth, I must leave here now, you can’t understand my world their rules, although they feel compelled by you for keeping our secret. they think that what has already happen between us will endanger your life further, my heart bleeds for you & the stains of the red liquid shows that, they have in trusted me to tell you that you are welcome in this house for as long as possible, the house is under the Hellas name & land is also, so you will have no problem needing anything, if you do wish to stay. The thoughts to when we will see each other again, my answer will be, oh yes my dear, these feeling to not come a vampire like me often & so wildly, & my heart & mind tells me we shall me again,.
You shall not be harmed by any man or vampire, as along as you live. With purest of hearts.
You will be in my thoughts & heart & dreams!!! & that’s where you belong.
I’ll say goodnight & farewell for the time being,
Your Shadow man.
P.S yes those kisses, those touches were real,