As I drink from my last living being, I am drawn to my sorrow filled memories. This all happened too fast; I could not stop myself from devouring my beloved. Now she has been banished to the fiery depths of Hell. My love has left me, my lust now has control; as her father approaches me with a stake, and I am ready to be banished into the world of black, my body to lay in the dust. With my broken heart and final tears, I am preserved forever into memories. Our ring lay, still wrapped in my skinny hand that has died. I am nothing but a monster; I am the vampire.

Seeing the stake in front of me, I realised that I was not always the monster which I am. Now I remember the times when I had my little farm beside the river and the girl whom I vowed to love till eternity lived next door. We fell in love by chance but stayed in love by choice. I still remember the smile on her face which extended beyond infinity. I had planned to get married to her.  I was a son of a farmer and she was the daughter of a city councilman. This fact bothered me and hindered me from approaching her father. Both of us wanted to be together.

“James, my father has decided to marry me to a local merchant,” said Helena crying in my arms. This gave me guts, I rushed to her father and confessed our love to him. But all he could see was my poverty. He rejected me. I started seeing myself as a loser. I was angry at myself, at her father, at this bad world. Why did they differentiate so much between rich and poor? Do poor men have no right to love? Do they have no rights to emotions? I had to get rich in a short amount of time as Helena will be a married woman in a matter of time. All I cared about was just Helena. I am ready to go to any extent for my love. I knew somewhere deep inside that my sense of judgement was clouded and this might lead to trouble.

After many sleepless nights I decided to travel to forbidden mountains to ask help from an evil creature called Kakos. The folks of my village feared him. He was a being of immense power as speculated in the various myths that floated around our village. I sensed that if there is a way out of my poverty in a short time, it is by gaining favours from The Devil.

After days of travel through difficult terrains I finally reached the forbidden mountains. I felt at the altar of devil that up is down, pain is pleasure, darkness is light and madness is sanity. It was silent, lonely and sublime. There was dense fog surrounding the mountains giving an eerie feel of being constantly watched over by someone. I was sweating profusely even though the weather was cold but I continued climbing. Finally I reached the peak where there was a big cave. Inky blackness gave way to a being that emerged perhaps from the greatest terrors that men subconsciously conjured and then suppressed in fright. Darkness that clung to his pale form reached towards me, hungry and vengeful. His skin was cracked; fire traversed his frame in erratic intermittent leaps, bound by his demonic will. His sword rusted in the blood and despair of his foes smouldered like a dying brazier, its bloodthirsty red reflected in the eyes of the creature. Sensations that prevaricated the existence of all good surrounded him and for a moment, just a passing moment, I doubted the very existence of love.

Kakos roared with laughter and asked me in a hissing tone “Why do you wish for such a painful death? What made you come here to Satan’s lair?” He roared again and laughed hysterically echoing through all the nooks and corners of The Forbidden Mountains. I did not want to die and here was this monster who was going to kill me any moment. Gathering courage I replied, “Death is not the greatest loss in life. The greatest loss is what dies inside us while we live. I cannot live without Helena.”

Kakos smirked an evil smile and the brightness of his lusty eyes penetrated the dark. He said, “Everything comes at a cost. I will make you rich but I want your soul in return of this favour. You will no longer remain a human and yes you will not die either”. I could not understand him but what I could understand was that I will not die and will return as a rich man to my village. I agreed to the devil’s deal. At that moment a strong gust of wind surrounded me and sucked my soul out leaving me in excruciating pain. I could see the image of Kakos in the gust of the evil wind revolving around me. He whispered in my ears “Never make a deal with the devil; he always cheats”.

Helena’s father seemed quite pleased with my overnight success. He was in a delirium about what all happened in the last few days which made me rich. Little did he know what was about to come next. As promised he agreed to marry his daughter to me. Everyone except me was happy. I was feeling different and there was something wrong within me, something very evil about me. I was thirsty all the time and the urge for human blood was increasing every moment. I needed to hunt.

There was a change in my demeanour. I started loving the solace of dark night. I became the creature of night and my thirst knew no satisfaction.

I wanted to reveal to Helena that I was not the same man she used to love. I had changed. Changed into a vampire. I did not want her to be kept in shadows of lies after marriage. So I arranged for a meeting with her. The last meeting probably.

Wispy clouds drifted in the night sky and their inconsiderable weight was unbearable to my trembling shoulders. Nervousness ate me, weakening my resolve with every bite. The sound of metal toed horse shoes rapidly approached me. The wheels came to a halt and she stepped out into the moonlight; her skin pale as a spectre. We silently walked together for a mile, her hands entwined under the pale flickering shadows of a dancing canopy. I looked upon her graceful form, from her deep blue eyes to the pulsing vein on her neck and I craved the blood that kept her alive. I shook my head trying to control my thirst. I looked deep into her blue eyes and told her the reason for calling her at this hour, the vampire I had become.

“Take your wretched hands off me”, she cried. Hatred consumed the love she had. She feared me and I just could not believe it. All these sacrifices were just for her and now she hates me. I was infuriated and the fire of anger made me feel thirsty. ”You are not the same”, she muttered as I lurched towards her. “Neither are you”, I hissed and with this I pierced my fang deep into her neck. She shrieked of pain as her beautiful ruby blood poured into my mouth. The hunger I felt was sated and as the love of my life fell to ground, pale and frail as a winter morning, I realised what I had just done.

I did not deserve this life anymore, she was in my arms dead. I could never imagine even in my gory dreams that I was capable of such a deed. I cursed myself for making a deal with the devil, if not for me she would still be alive. All this was past and now I could see Helena’s father approaching me with a Christian stake in his hands. I did not resist and was ready to be banished in the fiery depths of hell. Being a vampire was a curse which made me the killer I could never imagine. As I burned to ashes with the holy power of the stake I remembered the words of Kakos. “Never make a deal with the devil. He always cheats”.

Animesh Sagar

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