Past, Present and Eternity.

Another slant on vampires, featuring my favourite author . . . I'd love your comments. Thanks for your time.

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1. Past, Present and Eternity.

 

My name is Emily. You probably know me quite well but that isn't important just yet. I died halfway through the nineteenth century at the age of thirty. But now, as the millennium approaches, I am writing this for you dear reader. How? Why? This is my testimony.

From a very young age, I had always written. Stories and poetry which took me into the realms of darkness, love, death and beauty. Within my mind is a pantheon of cold cruel worlds, inhabited by wondrous souls seeking the loving arms of others. Today, people call me a mystic, a heretic. I just call myself a writer.

My dark imaginings isolated me from the real world and the people around me. Only my two sisters and brother shared my passion for the outpouring of the soul onto paper. We created worlds together, braved armies, made epic journeys and wept at the deaths our pens had inflicted. As my prose blackened, I became more and more insular and our shared worlds burst into four , each one our very own. I have never been a very talkative person; a lot of people even thought of me as arrogant or ignorant. Many was the time, when I needed to take a book from the parlour - but I also knew we had visitors in there. So I would rush in without uttering a syllable, find the book and run to my bedroom. All done without eye-contact or an ounce of recognition for any relative or friend in the room who may be glad to see me. All they would see was a silent blur of skirts.

My love found me, during the year when my sisters travelled abroad to take jobs as teachers and my brother went to train as an artist. Only me left, me and papa. Papa's eyesight rapidly began to fail so I stayed behind to look after him. Bliss. Finally I was alone to write.

One night, I sat at my bedroom window which looked over the graveyard in front of our house. The scene lit only by a clouded moon, the stones above the dust-sleepers, stood guard like granite sentinels - watching, waiting. The crows sat high in swaying nests, silent; their breaths stolen away by the frozen night breeze. Such a beautiful picture fed me with enough graven imaginings for a thousand stories.

Beneath me, on the garden - something moved.

He looked up at me with burning, amber eyes. Long, raven hair poured over his shoulders like rivulets of hot tar. Veal-white skin was pulled taut over high, elegant cheekbones, giving him an androgynous beauty. I should have screamed or ran for Papa but I became mesmerised by the tragic aura of the dark stranger before me. There was nothing I could do. He smiled. Something deep inside pulled a tear from my eye and my vision blurred. Within a blink, my visitor had gone. A cocktail of emotions ran through me: relief, sadness and the strange warming in the pit of my belly. I caught my breath quickening, as his ashen image snaked around my head, coiling it's way down through my body; lower, much lower. A cold breath, iced the back of my prickling neck and slowly, ever so slowly, I turned around.

Lying on my bed, with his hands clasped behind his neck, was my smiling intruder. The shock of one minute being at a safe (safer) distance, then the next seeing him sprawled out at arms reach away from me, had my hands clasping the window-sill for dear life. Again, running and screaming for Papa, remained with me for but a second, then burst like a bubble. I realised then that I didn't want anyone else to know, in fact I began to sanctify his very presence. Shadows seemed to swirl around my bedroom walls like drops of black ink on crystal waters. The air around us raked it's cadaver-cold nails at my flesh. It felt good. The sacrilegious feelings, reeling within me would have caused Papa to drag me by the hair into church, ordering me to recant before I burned in hell with all the other sluts -if he knew. Calming myself I asked his name.

'My name?' he whispered. 'Sleat. And you are Emily - Are you afraid of me Emily?' His thick, dark eyebrows rose with his question. The voice, so tender and hypnotic, that any fear I did have, effused from me, trickling slowly down my thighs. I shook my head in answer to his question, although he seemed to know it anyway. His amber glare sensitised every nerve in my body, even the touch of my night-gown on my bare skin caused a tremor.

Seduction was his art and he indeed was a master. When I asked him what he wanted of me, he answered that he was, like me, merely another misunderstood soul. Someone who wished to share stories and talk about literature. At last! someone to share the nightmare scrapings of my heart. And someone whose soul was without doubt, many shades darker than mine.

He stood up and walked over to me, I felt so small and helpless next to him, craning my neck to meet his stare. Kissing me softly on the forehead, a steady hand pushed through the length of my hair. He knew what he was doing to me. Was it in my eyes or the crescendo of my breath? He also seemed to sense that I had never, ever, been touched by a man before his eyes told me that. One by one, long fingers popped open the buttons of my night-gown, which was then pushed over my shoulders, crumpling to the floor. I was naked before him. My breath came and went in short quiet gasps as my lungs tore for air.

In one movement, Sleat lifted me up and lay me out on the bed. Then, discarding his own clothes, he dusted my breasts with his soft hair, kissed my mouth with frosted lips and cooled every inch of my body with an ice-cold tongue.

I knew he was no ordinary man.

I knew what he was. Papa warned me of creatures such as this. But, as Sleat did the only thing that was left to do to me; silently and very, very tenderly, melting deep within my wide open legs - I didn't care.

I was his forever.

For the next year, my lover came to my room every night, full of wild, wondrous stories, equalled only by our wonder-lust between the sheets. He taught me well, very well.

One night he came to me with a story, so amazing, so full of primal, demonic passion, that I just sat wide eyed and rapt. But unlike all his other stories, Sleat told me never to tell it to another soul or to ever write it down.

This story which he had impregnated into my head, swelled within my dreams, threatening to rupture my very sanity. I had to write it down. A year later it was a novel length manuscript, hidden beneath my pillow - my secret sin. By this time, my elder sister had had her first novel published. I had no such ambition; my writings were simply catharsis    a series of little self exorcisms.

To cut a very long story short, my sister discovered my manuscript and read it. My sacred story. Sleat's story, the story which should have been encased in my mind for all eternity. She hounded, urged and pleaded with me to let her send the story to a publisher. After many tears and harsh words, I gave in. It was accepted and a year later it was published (under a pseudonym of course). One moon-filled night Sleat came to me with a burning question. Before he had even asked, I had already offered my throat to him. After wiping the tears from his eyes, Sleat gave my vein a long, Sharp, searing kiss. As I slipped into the malignant abyss, I heard his whisper.

'We will have each other for all eternity.'

I don't know when I awoke, it could have been hours or even days later. Though my mortal life was not yet over, Sleat's blood cells still waging war on my own, I saw my Novel at the bottom of my bed. I had forgotten to hide it. Dragging my tortured body upright, I wept at the handwriting scrawled on the cover. You Betrayed Me. The last thing I remember, was my family crowding around me. Then, death stole my last breath.

With time, I finally rose from the family crypt where I lay to rest. Waiting for my love among the whispering graves. But he never came.

 

Since that day, I have written many, many books, all of which have been critical successes. My pseudonyms are many, as I always out-live my editors and publishers. I have loved and lost many men and women; some I took for lovers. Some I kissed until my belly became swollen with their blood. All many years dead. None of which ever compared to Sleat. Still I wait but still, he does not come.

Life does have it's little ironies to keep me amused. At my last book signing, a girl came back to me with a bemused expression on her face. When I asked what was wrong, she opened

the book up which I had earlier inscribed for her. A wide smile spread across my face as I read my mistake. I hadn't written my own name since the day I died:

 

Best Wishes

Emily Bronte.

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