I drew back, surprised. Morphine cocked her head at me.
You must login to vote
"What's the matter?" she said.
I rubbed absently at my temple. "Nothing. Just...I've only known you for an hour..."
"Yes. So?" She looked confused and annoyed, all at once. I've only known YOU for an hour, and already I know we were meant to be together. What's the problem?"
I shook my head. "I just...I..."
"You don't believe me, do you?"
It was impossible to read anything in her eyes.
"I told you," I said. "I don't believe or disbelieve in anything. I just-"
"Yes, I know. Shut up."
I stopped mid-sentence, agape.
"And shut your mouth," she said. "You look like a dead fish."
I shut my mouth.
"I know what you're saying," she said. "Even if you don't. You don't believe anything I've told you. You think I'm just another one of those stupid, flighty, romantic girls that get carried away in their tall, dark, handsome strangers. You have no faith in me, do you?"
"I don't have faith in anything," I said.
"Well maybe nothing has faith in YOU either, Renton! What keeps you from dropping dead every day like the rest of humanity? What keeps you from getting hit by a bus and smeared all over the pavement like a hundred and fifty pounds of low-quality ground beef? What makes YOU so special, Renton, you faithless asshole?!"
"Nothing," I said.
She was suddenly nose-to-nose with me, snarling, her teeth bared like an animal about to strike. Her canines were very sharp.
"THIS IS WHAT YOUR FAITH GETS YOU!" she screamed, and her hands wrapped around the lapels of my coat like twin vicegrips. I felt myself lifted off the ground and flung outward into the night. I saw the courthouse, saw the tall, conical evergreens that surrounded it, saw the pavement of the sidewalk- so far, far below...and my view began to tilt. I was treated to an upside-down glimpse of the Royal Theater marquee floating slowly by as I fell...
And then it was too fast to see anything. I felt myself fall, felt the utter panic of a thousand nightmares come rushing back in a single bust of abject terror, felt the cold, calculating nothingness that lay beyond it.
The pavement reared up in my field of vision and SLAMMED into me, smashing every bone in my body to jelly...
My eyes closed.
My eyes opened. I was not dead. If Cross was to be believed, I had already been dead anyway. The sky leered at me, green as the eyes of a goblin. I watched the evergreens sway in the breeze.
She stepped into my field of vision. She walked slowly, purposefully, as though she wanted to cement the moment deep into the eye of my memory. She stopped an inch from my right eye. I felt a swatch of fabric brush across my nose. It itched.
From my point of view, she was gigantic- a thousand-mile-high tower of white and black, stretching into the heavens above. Eyes far away, feet here at ground level, where I lay. One foot lifted- the sole was stained by dirt and grime- and settled on my chest. She leaned.
"Renton," she said. "You are a vampire. 'Know' or 'Not Know' whatever you want. You will still be a vampire when the sun rises." She smiled. "I said I was going to have fun with you, and I will, believe me, whether you want to or not. Vincent is a creature of great power, and he has given you to me to do with as I please. You are MINE, Renton. Mine. Mine." She pulled the sleeve away from her arm, and held the arm out before her. As I watched, she drew her thumbnail down the length of her forearm hard enough to part the flesh in a long, jagged cut that oozed dark blood- black under the night sky.
"Drink." she said, and knelt down on my body, pressing the arm to my face. "You think you're dead, or paralyzed, or dying anyway, so there's nothing you can do to stop me. Give in. Give yourself to me. Drink."
The blood poured over my face, hot and wet and black as midnight. I thrashed under her arm, desperate to pull my face away. The blood flowed over into my eyes. The world was enveloped in a cloud of darkness, and I felt the panic rise up, consuming everything...
When I could see again, I found that I was locked arm and arm with her. Morphine. I could see my arms, intact and unpulverized. I could feel my body, unhurt and flowing with energy unlike anything I had ever experienced. Morphine filled my vision, her grin a rictus of manic excitement, sharp little canines gleaming white in the gloom. Her hands were immovable- steel bars set into the grooves of my knuckles. I could not move her. I could not flee.
"You're strong," she said. "Even after the fall. Even after everything, you're strong. But I'm stronger."
She pushed, and I was pressed flat against the pavement, arms pinned under her iron grip. She smiled, and in that smile I saw madness.
She opened her mouth wide, wider, widest- until I was certain the skin of her lips would split open from the strain- and brought her fangs down on the flesh of her own tongue, driving clean through, slicing off the last half inch of red muscle. It fell into my face and rolled away.
"Lover," she whispered, and pressed her bloody mouth to mine.
Later. We walked together under the goblin moon, hand-in-hand. Neither of us spoke for a long time, nor did we feel we had to. The flesh of her tongue had grown back hours ago, but she said nothing, and made no indication that she expected anything from me. We simply walked, under the goblin moon, and held each others hands like lost children, trapped in the depths of the forest, unable to find their way back home.
"Quit this world, quit the next world, quit quitting!" -Sufi proverb.