THE SAMURAI VAMPIRE SCROLLS

"She takes the heads of the undead."

For fans of manga epics, the KILL BILL movies, and old-school adventure stories.

After Oyomi's entire family is slaughtered by Lord Toyogomi, a powerful Vampire Lord, she is brought up in an abandoned temple by a ghostly woman-ninja and taught swordsmanship by the Shakuhachi playing son of the King of Hell. When she is old enough and well-trained enough in the Way of the Sword, she sets out to kill both Lord Toyogomi and his jeering, sadistic hunchback sidekick Shuzo. But first she must cut through the many other sword-wielding Vampires standing in the way of her singleminded quest for bloody vengeance . . .

The Samurai Vampire Scrolls: Scroll 1

(Translated from the Japanese by A. G. Hardy)

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3. The Slap

 

-Tcch! Oyomi-chan! Put it down! Wipe your hands! Come here now!

 

Oyomi set down the bowl she had been forming out of clay, wiped her hands on the grass, and ran in pattering barefoot steps from the garden into the dark expanse of the Ichuzo home. Oyomi's mother grabbed her and wiped her clay-smudged face with a cloth. Smacked her bottom.

 

-Quick as lightning! Let's go outside!

 

Oyomi put her small hand in her mother's big hand. Together they hurried to the street entrance, where father and brother were already kneeling with their heads bowed.

 

-Get down! hissed Oyomi's mother, and so she knelt, bowing her head.

 

 

Lord Toyogomi and his frightening retinue of mounted samurai in leather and chain-mail armor were coming up the dusty street at a brusque trot, followed by the foot soldiers -- the Ashikaga, or banner samurai in light armor.

 

Each horseman bore the crest of the Moon Bat on his helmet. They wore long and short swords strapped to their sides.

 

Warriors walking behind the Ashikaga began blowing into conches. The blaring noise made Oyomi wince. A samurai dashing ahead of the horsemen cupped his hands to his mouth, shouting:

 

-Lord Toyogomi is approaching! Bow your heads to the earth!

 

Father, Brother, and Mother all bowed their heads to the bare earth.

 

-Oyomi-chan, Mother hissed. Bow your head low!

 

But Oyomi did not even hear her mother. She was staring entranced at Lord Toyogomi, a black clad samurai warrior now towering above her on his frothing black horse.

 

Lord Toyogomi jerked on the reins, and the horse snorted, turning around in place. The Lord pointed his horsewhip at the head of the little girl kneeling beside her parents. Oyomi merely blinked.

 

-Shuzo!

 

-Hai, Awesome and Great Lord!

 

-Slap the mannerless brat!

 

-Hai!

 

A bowlegged, leering hunchback who had been trotting behind the horsemen put down his heavy gear with a grunt. He dashed over to where Oyomi sat staring up at the terrifying Lord.

 

As Shuzo drew his arm back, Father glanced up without moving his head. He whispered:

 

-Oyomi-chan. After he hits you, bow and say, Arigato.

 

Shuzo slapped the little girl with all his strength. She rolled over backwards, her head clunking against the doorjamb. Her eyes watering from the pain and dizziness, she scrambled back to her knees, shouted, Arigato! and bowed her head until her forehead rested on the ground.

 

The horsemen burst into wild laughter.

 

Lord Toyogomi growled:

 

-Shuzo! Tell these peasants to gather their things and get out. I am taking their home for my headquarters.

 

Shuzo, his ugly lips drooling as he shook with merriment, said to Father:

 

- The Great and Awesome Lord decrees that this shack shall serve as his HQ. Get out.

 

Father said:

 

-Yes, at once, of course. Domo. Domo Arigato.

 

Shuzo kicked Father in the ribs. Father did not cry out.

 

-Less words, more motion, you pathetic farmer!

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