Vampire wake, p.1

Vampire Wake, page 1

 part  #2 of  Kiera Hudson Series One Series


Vampire Wake

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Vampire Wake
Chapter One

  "What about the nightmares, Kiera?"

  "What about them?" I asked.

  "Are you stil having them?"

  "Yes," I told her.

  The doctor sat opposite me, her thin hands holding my case file across the lap of her tweed skirt. Her pale, grey eyes stared back at me from behind her glasses.

  She wasn't unattractive, but her fair hair was puled too tightly into a bun at the base of her neck, which gave her face a pinched, almost angry look. She couldn't have been any older than thirty-five but the glasses and the way she fixed her hair made her look more like forty-five. She appeared very prim and proper - but I could see that there was more to her than that.

  "Are they always the same?" she pushed, her eyes fixed on mine over the rim of her glasses.

  "About my mother?" I asked, although I knew what she meant. "Yes they are mostly about my mother," I answered.

  "Mostly?" she fired back, keen to pick up on every word that I said.

  "Mostly," I repeated.

  "What else then, if not about your mother?" she asked, opening my file and taking a pen from her desk.

  "Doctor Keats, I've been coming to see you every week now for the last six months. You know what else," I replied.

  "The vampires?" she asked.

  "Yes," I said, not breaking her stare.

  "Tel me about them," she pushed, pen poised above her notes.

  "Why? What's the point?" I asked, trying not to get frustrated with her. "You don't believe me - no one believes me. That's why I'm here, isn't it? The force wants to know if I'm mad - wants to know if I'm fit to go back to policing the streets. Isn't that what this is al realy about?"

  "Can you blame your employer for doubting you, Kiera?" Keats asked with that patronising tone in her voice.

  "Of course I blame them," I said. "They were the ones who sent me to The Ragged Cove. "

  Thumbing through my case notes, she said, "From what I can see, you volunteered to go, Kiera. " Then looking up at me she added, "No one forced you. "

  "But if I'd known. . . " I snapped, then stopped myself from going on.

  "Known what?" she said in that tone again.

  "That the place was infested with vampires. I wouldn't have taken up the post," I explained.

  Smiling at me, like a mother who knows best for her wayward child, Doctor Keats shook her head from side to side and said, "But Kiera, there were no vampires. "

  "How do you account for al those incinerated bodies in the church?" I asked, meeting her gaze again.

  "A terrible tragedy. Those poor souls caught in a horrendous fire while celebrating an early morning mass," she said.

  "Oh please," I groaned. "You don't realy believe that, do you?"

  "What else could've happened?" she asked.

  Knowing that I was never going to convince her that those burnt remains were realy the skeletons of vampires, I said, "So what about al the cops that went missing from that place?"

  "Lots of people go missing from time to time, Kiera," she smiled. "It doesn't mean that they became vampires. "

  I looked around the blank colourless wals of her office and I didn't know for how many more days or weeks I could keep coming and going over the same old thing. She was never going to believe me and I was never going to change my story. So picking up my bag that rested against the leg of my chair, I stood up.

  "I realy can't keep doing this, so goodbye Doctor Keats," I said and turned towards the door.

  "You know you can't just walk out of here," she said, and there was a tinge of smugness in her voice.

  "Why not?" I asked, glancing back at her.

  "Not if you want your badge back, Constable Hudson. " Then staring me straight in the face, she smiled, "Not if you want to find your mother. "

  Lingering by the door, I said, "What do you know of my mother?" I breathed.

  "Only what you've told me," she said. "But I know the only way you'l ever get your hands on her missing person's file wil be to get back on the force. And the only way that's ever going to happen, is if I sign you Fit For Duty. "

  "That sounds like blackmail to me!" I hissed.

  "No, it's not blackmail, Kiera," she smiled and pushed her glasses back onto the bridge of her nose.

  "It's caled 'protecting the public. ' They pay a lot of taxes for their police force and I'm sure they wouldn't want -"

  "Want what?" I demanded.

  "Somebody policing their streets and towns who -"

  "Who was mad enough to believe in the existence of vampires?" I finished for her.

  Holding out her hand towards me, I looked down at it as she ushered me back towards the chair. "Come Kiera, sit back down. Let's talk. "

  Taking my seat again, I asked, "Talk about what?"

  "Luke Bishop," she half-smiled.

  "We've' already been over this," I said, taking my seat again.

  "Humour me," she said, pen poised over her notes again.

  "What do you want to know?"

  "He was a vampire, right?"

  "A Vampyrus," I corrected her.

  "So what's the difference?" she asked, peering at me over the rim of her glasses.

  "You know what the difference is," I said, starting to feel frustrated again. "The Vampyrus are a breed of vampire bat. They're not like normal vampires - they don't have to kil -"

  "But you said some of these Vampyrus did kil,"

  she cut over me. "That they kiled some of the townsfolk from The Ragged Cove. "

  "There are some Vampyrus that don't want to live underground anymore. They want to live above ground, like us," I started.

  "But you've previously told me that some of these Vampyrus do live amongst us," she said thumbing through her notes as if to refresh her memory. "You told me that some of them have managed to work their way into some of the most senior positions in society. "

  "That's right," I told her. "But that isn't enough for some of them. Others want more than that. . . "

  "So, Bishop, what does he want?" she asked, looking straight at me.

  "He wants to live like us," I said.

  "So how come we. . . I mean us humans aren't aware of these Vampyrus?" she asked as she scrawled some notes across the pad on her lap.

  "Because they look just like us," I said, tired of going around and around in circles with Doctor Keats.

  Then looking up at me she smiled and said, "But Kiera, you said that Luke Bishop had wings,"

  "Look, I'm realy bored of this. . . " I started.

  "Did you have a relationship with this Bishop?" she asked, the tip of her pen hovering over her notes.

  "What's that supposed to mean?"

  "Were you in love with him?"

  Looking away from her, I stared at the long windows behind her. The sky looked dreary and overcast and it reminded me of those wet and miserable days spent in The Ragged Cove. I thought of Luke, and it was hard sometimes to even recal his face in my mind's eye. Al I could see was Potter lowering Luke's burnt body into Murphy's arms, then disappearing into the hole in the floor at the police station. Although it had only been six months since I'd left The Ragged Cove, it seemed more like a lifetime ago.

  "Kiera?" Doctor Keats said.

  "Huh?" I whispered looking back at her.

  "Were you in love with this Luke. . . ?"

  "I thought I was," I said, my voice low, just above a whisper. "But now I'm not so sure. When I was with him - it was like he had me under a spel. I had feelings that I'd never known or experienced before. They were so intense at the time. But now that we've been apart, it's like those feelings have started to fade. "

  "Did you have a physical relationship with him?"

  Keats asked, her eyes fixed on mine.
br />   "Oh please," I groaned. "Why does it always have to come back to that?"

  "It's important," she said.


  "Kiera, you claim to have met and falen in love with a species not known to mankind," she said, "a species of bat that looks human but has the ability to grow wings and fly. You also tel me that for hundreds, possibly thousands of years, these creatures have been sneaking from below ground to live amongst us. So isn't it possible that like you and Bishop, humans and these Vampyrus would have falen in love and perhaps produced children? If that were the case, don't you think it would be worth investigating?"

  "I'm not pregnant if that's what you're wondering,"

  I snapped. "I'm not going to give birth to some mutant half-breed if that's what you're scared of!"

  "You might not be," she smiled again, "but who's to say that others in the past haven't? How do we know that living right amongst us aren't the children born out of relationships between humans and these 'Vampyrus' as you cal them?"

  "Look, Doctor, I don't know anything about that,"

  I hissed. "It's not like Luke and me sat around chatting al day long, we were too busy -"

  "Doing what?" she jumped in.

  "Fighting for our lives!" I felt like screaming.

  Realising that she was pissing me off again, and I was close to getting up and leaving for good, Keats closed the folder on her lap and folded her hands.

  "Okay Kiera, I can see that you find talking about Luke upsetting, so I'd like to talk about something else. "

  "Like what?" I sighed.

  "The blood," she smiled.

  "Blood?" I asked, but knew where she was heading.

  "You've told me at length how you often see things," she said.

  "Yes," I nodded.

  "But you say you see more than. . . wel more than I would, let's say. "

  "It's like I absorb every detail that I see," I tried to explain al over again to her. "It's like I see stuff that most people wouldn't even notice. "

  "But it's more than that now?" she asked.

  Nodding, I said, "Sometimes I see things that I shouldn't be able to see. Things that haven't happened yet. "

  "Like a psychic?" she said, and I couldn't help but notice the smile tugging at the corners of her lips.

  "No, not like a psychic," I cringed. "I can't explain it. . . "

  "But you said that you've started to bleed from your left eye when you have these visions. Is that right?"

  "I'm not sure if the two are connected," I said. "It could be caused by something else. "

  "A brain tumour?"

  "You tel me, you're the doc, Doc," I grinned at her.

  "Kiera, you had al the tests, there is nothing wrong with you," she said.

  "I'm not lying," I insisted.

  "How about another kind of test?" Keats asked.

  "What sort of a test?"

  "Okay, you say you can see things about people,"

  she smiled again. "Tel me, what did I have for my breakfast?"

  "Give me a break," I sighed. "It doesn't work like that. "

  "How does it work, then?" she said. "Go on, tel me something about me that you couldn't possibly know. "

  "You realy don't want me to do that," I said, and looked straight at her.

  "Why not?" she asked in that tone again.

  I looked at her sitting across the room from me, back straight, legs together, hands folded on her tweed skirt. She looked like a headmistress who thought she was in some way superior to me.

  "Are you sure?" I asked her, almost as a warning.

  "I'm sure," she smiled, not believing for a moment that I would be able to see anything about her at al.

  Without taking my eyes off hers, there was a smal part of me that was going to enjoy this.

  "You're married, but not happily and you don't have any children. You find your husband boring, and despite your sober appearance, you crave excitement and adventure. You find this in the affair that you're having with a male who is about ten years younger than you. He is tal, lean, and strong-looking. His hair is blonde and he has blue eyes, the complete opposite of your husband. Your lover isn't married and you want him to believe that you aren't either. But I don't think he realy cares about that. He would probably like it if you were - he'd find it more exciting that way. You hide the fact that you are married from him, not to protect your husband, but there is a very smal part of you that knows what you are doing is wrong, so you're not realy deceiving him, you're tricking yourself. You just can't let go of the austere image that you like to promote. "

  I couldn't help but notice Keats shift uncomfortably in her seat, puling the hem of her skirt an inch or two over her knee. "Kiera, please could you stop. . . . "

  "Oh, I'm sorry, I thought this was some kind of test. I realy think I should carry on. " Now it was my turn to smile.

  "Kiera -" she started, but I cut over her.

  "You spent your lunch hour today with your lover in a room in the Holiday Inn Motel, just two streets from here. Your sex was quick and rushed, but he had time to. . . let me see. . . yes restrain you. . . "

  "Enough already!" Doctor Keats screamed, almost faling forward off her seat. Her face was flushed, and her hands trembled in her lap. "I think that's al for today Kiera," she said, sounding out of breath. "You should go. "

  "As you wish," I smiled to myself, gathering up my bag and standing.

  "I think we've gone as far as we can go with our sessions," she said, not looking at me. "I'm going to refer your case onto another coleague. "

  "Whatever you think is best, Doc," I said, puling open the door to her office. Then just as I was about to step out into the corridor, she caled after me.

  "How did you know al that?" she asked. "It was some kind of trick, right?"

  Shaking my head, I said, "No tricks, no magic. "

  "But how then?"

  "The picture of you and that man on your desk has got to be your husband. If you have a picture of your husband then you'd have pictures of your children, too.

  Seeing as there aren't any pictures of sons and daughters tels me the chances are you don't have any.

  Your bag is open on the floor beside you and on the top are your car keys, compact mirror and a key card with the words Holiday Inn Havensfield printed on it.

  Must have been used today or otherwise it would have been further down your bag. The fact that it's there at al, says that you were in a rush to leave the motel and forgot to hand it back in at Reception. The top two buttons of your blouse have been fastened incorrectly, I can smel aftershave on you and you're not wearing your wedding ring as usual. Again, al signs that you were in a rush getting back from lunch. It's not the only time I've seen you not wearing your ring. You always have it on during my morning appointments, but this is the seventh time I've noticed it missing during my afternoon appointments, suggesting that you often remove it during your lunch break; and why would that be? You don't wear bracelets, but today, like on four other occasions I've noticed red circular marks on your wrists. You forget, Doctor Keats, I'm a police officer, and I'd recognise the marks left behind by handcuffs anywhere. "

  "Okay, okay," she groaned at me. "You've made your point. But how did you know what he looks like?"

  Smiling down at her, I said, "Why, Doctor, that was the easy part. Three weeks ago, I arrived early for my appointment with you, so I sat and ate a sandwich in the smal gardens just across the road. I happened to look up and see you climbing from a taxi. But before you got out, you lent back inside and kissed a young blonde-haired man. He didn't look like the picture of the man in the photo on your desk, and the kiss wasn't like the kiss you give to a friend or a brother - your lips lingered just a little too long over his. He had to be your lover. "

  Without looking back at her, I stepped out into the corridor, closing the door behind me. The thought of never having to sit opposite her again and face another of her interrogations felt wonderful - i
t felt like freedom.

  And as I left the building and stepped out into the grey afternoon sun, I guessed that she was glad that she would never have to see me again, too.

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