Bane... part 2 (had word limit)
Familiar roof, his idol posters. It was seven am. That was some impression of Quinn D’Arion. Had his relatives been lying? Still, the dream could be implanted by the Nightchild. Telepathy was a gift to them all. At basketball with Murphy and the others, Eric tried to forget the incident. But he would continue to have the same recurring dream. The sensation was always pleasant, no animosity from Quinn D’Arion. This warmth was absent in his relationship with his blood relatives.
Eric stood at the window, hoping for a glimpse of the vampire. His memory seemed so fuzzy. There was a gap between the dreams with Quinn D'Arion and his eighth birthday with his little friends. The big cake had colorful candles all lighted. Aunt Mabel and Uncle Tim were present. He took photos and danced about.
Why was there nothing in between? Doubts blossomed in his head. Despite his trepidation, Eric wanted to talk to him again.
Quinn D'Arion prowled in the trees furiously. The area around the house was marked by special symbols. His arm, lacerated with burn marks. How could this human child set traps against him and learn witchcraft! Eric Silverthorn is mine. I erred when I did not listen to my elders and marked him. I wanted to wait till he was at least ten before I did that. Every Nightchild had to abide tradition of the Elders and mark their children with four pricks. Then these mortals would inherit the basic powers as protection when their master was not with them.
Quinn shook his head. He needed to concentrate his thoughts.
The day the boy escaped…. The screen door was flapping open. His first worry had been kidnapping. These people pretending to be his parents had whisked the child off. Quinn had read their minds and they whispered, we need a boy child to pass our powers on. Forget this one. You belong to us.
After scanning the house of life, the vampire found no one was in. Good. ‘Listen to me. These are not your uncle and auntie. Your parents are dead. Let me talk to you.’ He flew up onto the roof and crouched.
The aunt and uncle were returning soon. Please let me get through to the boy!
Eric felt his head aching. He felt pained and nauseated. Would it hurt to reply to the message? Okay here goes nothing. ‘Hello? My head hurts. Don’t shout at me anymore.’
Quinn Sent, ‘Finally. Your mind is open again. Do you know how to turn off the runes around the house? I’ve been burnt.’
He climbed to the second roof and searched for foliage to hide near. Ah there were a few trees. The slim man leapt onto the maple tree and settled among the branches. ‘I am not a druid. Just allow me shelter for a few minutes. Thank you.’ The tree allowed him to rest his weight.
‘Why should I do that? I think I trust my relatives. I have my birthcert and papers.’ Eric felt torn in two directions. He could go with this person, or stay. Staying was a friendlier option. A roof over his head and a promise that he could go to Harvard or a good college. With this vampire Nightchild, maybe life was worse. They always wanted a companion, or breed a whole family. Not humans, but in that, they like companions. Partners. Set up more and more children, fathers and mothers…. he could not see his friends or walk in daylight again. His skin grew clammy. Went to the phone.
The violet eyed man felt deeply saddened. Why did the boy loath him? I mean you no harm. Your dreams are testimony to that. I know it is useless now to force you. Could you just allow me to explain? But I cannot reach you with these runes in place. They are witchcraft.
Then you are evil. Sides, I can’t shut off the spell. My parents are powerful sorcerors.
The other sounded almost frustrated: I am not evil, Eric. See the holy water and the Bible? Fine, I shall go. Do what you will. I leave the option open, call my name. Take care. The voice was full of tenderness, not ferocity or cursing, as Eric and Mabel expected from a Night creature. The boy felt a stab of regret. He stopped dialing Uncle’s cell and went to bed.
When the mortal awoke, he got to work. Questioning his relatives would go nowhere. He should check the certificates. They were in the attic under lock and key. Eric closed his eyes and found an image of a question mark. Mentally, he inserted the key and turned the lock. The papers in pink were there. The box opened. His bloodtype was different, his was A- while his uncle had O blood and Mable had AB- blood.
They had always insisted his folks perished in a fire. Photos of a young man and woman. They didn’t look like him at all. Was Quinn right? Life was a joke. They were lying to him.
Mabel and his uncle were back. Eric hid the documents and the box under a slot at his bed. He would come back for them. They asked about his day.
‘Fine everything is fine. Oh I finished my homework. If it’s ok, I need to go out for some fresh air.” He prayed it would be okay, he was exhausted from this thinking.
Mabel’s hand came down, fist clenched. “You mustn’t. Gypsies in the area.” She had persuaded or rather, nagged him about strangers and no going out. There was a general assumption that vampires, aka nightstalkers were evil doers and everywhere. More than one in the vicinity.
Eric folded his arms. Acting smart would not work. Had to resort to softer approach. ‘Aunt I won’t leave our garden. Just need a few minutes. Promise to come in before it’s too cold.’
Uncle Tim was also against the idea. They thought alike, couple. It was touching of their gesture. But how could he have personal space? “Uncle I appreciate this. 15 minutes.”
“Don’t touch the runes we drew. They are to protect us.” Us sounded very suspicious and freaky. Eric ran out into the moon dappled garden. He had not been outside at night since he was a child and a flying creature tried to murder him. The trees were ghostly illuminations. The blackness highlighted some slack forms. Eric saw the four elements. Fire, wind, water, earth. And an unknown. It was an icon of a red deer with strange horns. If he was not mistaken, that one was anti night creature.
Erik, he pronounced it like that. Do they know?
I can’t remove them. Ouch. He tried to rub off the deer with his foot but it hurt. Can’t.
Silence. Soft footsteps and a figure materialized out of the mist. A tall man with pale skin, bright violet green eyes, windswept dark hair with blue tinge. Quinn. He whispered his name and smiled. It softened his face.
My child, don’t be afraid He did not move his lips. ‘How long?’
Fifteen minutes, Eric answered, stepping backwards. If he was to talk to him he’d better not speak aloud. Can’t have the people chasing him. Is that painful?
The vampire sustained serious injuries that would have killed a mortal. Scars lacerated in progress on his forehead, bare arms, lips cracked and dry. Singed smell had wafted about him. Quinn begged him to come forward. The runes were there.
Eric hoped he was right. He left the barrier. Surreal feeling of stepping off the edge of the world. This preternatural was different, not dressed in ancient garb. Vampires liked to imitate the clothing of the era they died in. but it was not modern either. A black faded jacket billowing about his figure, small shoes, belt lashed loosely. He was so thin it would fall off. Inside was a red tunic.
‘Don’t you know the cause of this wound? And that? These people have used sun runes. I am Christian,’ Quinn said normally. He did not sound mocking or petty.
‘Yea. Will.. will they heal? Come away.’ Eric glanced at his face, but his form seemed shifting. So he observed the wounds. Really macabre. They walked to the moonlight. Slowly some of the arm lacerations cooled off. Mist blew away. White substance like powder.
‘I need to help you. It is my duty.’ the Nightchild urged, whirling around to face him. He was encircled in shadow. Yet, Eric saw his features clearly now, a lot of grief and brotherly affection. Some anger in the hardness of his lips. He pressed down his fangs. Not directed towards Eric though…the pupils were flatly green.
‘How can I believe you? We are… not the same.’
It broke his heart. The tears flowed down unrestrained. It was the fault of the unstable feelings that came with immortality. How could he calm down, when his friend would not trust him. Again, Quinn chided himself for not marking him. But will that have helped him now? Marking was the act of making some fang marks on the throat.
The mortal boy looked at him, squinting to see him more clearly. He smiled and allowed him to see him in opaque form. Don’t have to be scared. I am just like you. Only not human.
Eric found himself compelled to go and hug his companion. He shook his head. The sensation died away. Hypnotism! Eric blocked his emotional part. Quinn rubbed his eyes. He was crying human crystal tears. ‘I am so sorry. I failed you. If you could just come home, you’d understand.’
Then he sniffed the air like a dog. Light shone in his inhuman orbs. They shone as if glasses had fragmented in them. ‘Not now. Your people have come home.’ The vampire spread his arms and touched him. Eric was so dizzy he wanted to vomit.
Then he was standing outside his porch facing the open gate. How did he…. Teleportation! His mind supplied. Vampires can move as fast as a plane, warped speed and they become attuned to all their senses and surroundings. Cannot sneak up on them. Why did he remember things in memories and bits but not completely? Most of the voice internally was robotic.
Eric He had to tell him he had his suspicions. When he thought he connected with the mysterious being, he said, Take care. Don’t come too close, Quinn.
He thought he saw the vampire hiding in the maple trees.
Hi. I'm new and still learning the ropes of the critiquing that's done and expected here.
One thing I did notice was the profusion of short sentences. No doubt a style choice. I began my novel like this, thinking a jumpy style like this might be the best way to tell the story. What happened was, over the course of many rewrites, the sentences came together and that original idea went by the way
I think that kind of change could help here, especially in the second part. If for no other reason than a style full of short, truncated sentences pulls the reader out of the story by "red-flagging" the stylistic device. It also doesn't ever achieve that rythmn that readers typically respond to.
Trust me, I thought it would be great, but I had to pretty much abandon it in rewrites (plus it was hard to sustain after the first chapter or two when you really need to get into some action, exposition etc.).
(The novel I'm talking about is now up for critique on the board here -- it's called Murderhouse. If you've looked at it you'll see no signs of the short sentences I was employing at first.)
Hope this helps. Just my two cents, based on experience...
This is probably the most saw-toothed writing I've ever read. I bet your average sentence length is five or six words. Combine sentences and add subjects to your verbs. Aside from that, I have no clue whatsoever as to what's happening. It's like you express half ideas with half sentences and no transition between ideas.
Needs a load of work, IMHO.