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The Night

"There is something utterly mesmerising about the River Thames at night."

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The water flowed swiftly beneath my feet as I looked down from the parapet. There is something utterly mesmerising about the River Thames at night. The lights of the city reflected in the fast-flowing water have a beauty all of their own. Even on a wet night such as this. No, especially on such a wet night. The reflections are brighter, more widespread, somehow. When darkness falls, the city comes alive.

Standing in the centre of Tower Bridge, I look upstream, past the dark outline of the great warship, HMS Belfast, moored on the left. In the distance, I can see the lights of a pleasure boat passing under London bridge. The white lights on it, a stark contrast to the soft, purple lighting under the bridge.

To my right, the ancient Tower of London. The stories from that place would turn your stomach, but I have lived them all.

I take a deep breath, taking in the myriad sensations of the intermingled scents. The many restaurants and street cafés, the diesel from the boats, and the water, always the water.

In my time, I have seen many changes, but at night, there are always the lights. Once they were dim and yellow, a flickering gas flame, and later, electric lamps cast their glow upon the continually changing mirror of the water. Now there are colours, pink, red, green and, always my favourite, a vivid blue.

I become aware of a presence beside me, a young man, leaning on the rail. I look at him. Not unattractive, I think. Young, late twenties perhaps. His long blond hair, blowing slightly in the chill night air.

“Beautiful, isn't it?” he says, turning to face me.

I catch his gaze and smile. I don't reply but move closer to him, I have him now. He doesn't know me, but I attract him enough for him not to pull away as I move closer.

I can smell him now, a cheap aftershave does nothing to cover the scent of his arousal. Slowly I move my face towards his, our lips almost touch. I pause, looking into his eyes, and then... My fangs sink deeply into his Jugular!

He tries to pull away, but he cannot, and I drink my fill of his hot, sweet blood.

This has been my city for over one thousand years, no-one escapes me.

Sated, I toss his lifeless corpse over the rail and watch the splash as it hits the water below and disappears beneath the surface. The colourful reflections disturbed by the ripples as they spread outwards.

If the city lights did not shine so brightly, maybe he would have noticed the faint red glow in my eyes. I raise my arms, my cloak hanging loose, and fly from that place back to the darkness of the tower. But first, I soar over the river, enjoying once more, those colourful reflections on the water.

People watch me as I pass quickly over their heads, frightened and yet fascinated.

“Bats won't hurt you,” they say. “They have sonar.”

Feeble creatures! If only they knew that not all bats are harmless! Hahahaha...

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