Blood of a Lamb

By Kavyansh

Original link: https://www.storiesspace.com/stories/romance-/blood-of-a-lamb.aspx

Tags: craving, seduction, love, salvation

Added: 02 Sep 2016 Views: 597 Avg Score: 5

A vampire finds salvation in the love of a young woman.

The moment I saw her that autumn afternoon, I knew that I just had to have her. Sitting quietly in the shadows of the empty library, lit only by the lambent warmth of the reading lamp over the desk, her demure beauty ignited a fire in my soul that had been dormant for many centuries, and I knew that I must take her life force and make it my own.

ooOoo

I was born long before the present day in a small town in what is now Rumania as the dying embers of the Roman Empire were finally being extinguished by the hordes of barbarians from the East. My birth name was Vladislav, but I have long since taken a name more fitting to my adopted country, and today I am just plain Walter Drake.

Even in early childhood, I realised that I was different from my fellows. I could not share their delight in the bright sunlight of Spring and Summer, and preferred to remain indoors reading while they played in the meadows outside the town walls. The light hurt my pale blue eyes, and my skin would burn and blister if I stayed outdoors too long. As I grew into adulthood, I slowly withdrew from normal society to inhabit the shadows, where I pursued my studies of ancient history and philosophy by the light of a solitary candle.

It was not until I was in my early twenties that I discovered the electrifying effect of blood upon my soul. I had always had a liking for raw meat, a rare treat in those days, but it was when I sucked the finger of a niece who had been left in my care — which she had carelessly cut on a piece of broken glass — that I first experienced the rush of energy that comes from drinking the blood of a fellow human being. It was far more intoxicating than any drug, and believe me, I have tried them all, from the coca leaf and magic mushrooms to cocaine and heroin, as well as the concoctions of modern chemists.

After that first heady taste of the life essence of a mortal human, desire turned to addiction, and I sought ways to satisfy my overwhelming need. Very soon I discovered that blood was at its most potent during the act of love when the life force of the victim pulses most vigorously. Oh, the ineffably sweet moment when I have pierced my willing victim’s succulent and yielding flesh at the very moment of her greatest ecstasy — a moment of divine rapture as I sink my teeth into her unguarded neck. There are no words to describe that climactic moment when I feel her life force flowing in an incandescent stream throughout my body as her blood pulses from her punctured arteries.

At this point in my tale, I feel I need to dispel the myths about vampires that have taken root in the human consciousness, mainly as a result of Bram Stoker’s gothic novella about Count Dracula. I once raised this with him over dinner, but his rejoinder was that the facts about the life of a vampire were too dull to make the best selling story, and even admitted that the character of Dracula was based on his actor friend Henry Irving, rather than a real life vampire. The way we have been portrayed in films hasn't been much better, and Nosferatu was particularly insulting — the best portrayal by an actor in my view was Gary Oldman in Coppola’s Dracula, but there was still too much blood.

Our immortality is not dependant on drinking blood, merely that without it, life seems stale and flat, just like a typical winter's day in soggy Manchester compared to the brilliant light and colour of the Mediterranean. Like most of my kind, I stopped ageing at about the age of forty-five when the normal processes of fleshly decay became arrested, and I have looked the same now for nearly 1500 years. Nor is it true that daylight is mortally deadly to us. As I have said, direct sunlight is painful and burns our flesh, but we can live quite happily in subdued light, and the atmosphere of an industrial city such as Manchester, where the sun rarely penetrates the blanket of cloud and smog, is an ideal habitat.

My story is fairly typical of my kind, most of whom have attempted to seek refuge in an ordinary dull existence on the fringes of society. As the centuries rolled on, and my need for the fresh blood of a human victim, preferably female — the blood of a male doesn't taste all that pleasant — grew more acute, I realised that if I were to survive, I would have to forgo my desires. Although vampires have existed since the beginnings of human history, their persecution only became an epidemic in eighteenth-century Europe, particularly in the kingdoms of the Hapsburg Empire. The witch hunt was fanned by the Catholic Church, chiefly I believe to divert attention from the depredations of their own clergy on ordinary people — it has always struck me as interesting that the early Christians were themselves accused of drinking blood, and the effect of the blood of Christ at the Eucharist on the believer is described in the much the same language as the effect of human blood on a vampire.

At the time about which I am writing back in the 1950s, I had not tasted blood from the neck of a female victim in over 200 years, although I could still remember it with piercing clarity, and three were days when the craving was almost unbearable. All that changed on a foggy day at the University of Manchester Library where I worked as an antiquarian and custodian of the collection. I saw Eloise, and my resolve was shattered in a moment, and I knew that I just had to have her.

ooOoo

I decided that my seduction of Emily would have to be a careful and delicate affair — the joy of the ultimate consummation is so much sweeter if the pursuit of the victim is the culmination of a prolonged courtship, and the strength of the victim’s life force is so much more intense if she has fallen in love with you. In the past, and particularly in my youth, I wasn't so choosy, and a casual affair with a milkmaid or serving wench was the limit of my aspirations — but I learned better as I grew older and wiser.

I didn't pounce that first afternoon but waited several days to see if she would return. My first approach was entirely professional in my role as a student of history, and one afternoon as she was searching the shelves of books I asked if there was any way I could be of assistance. Over the following weeks she came to depend on me more and more — after all my centuries of study there was very little which I did not have at least a modicum of knowledge, and in her chosen subject of the history of persecution by the Church of those who were different or strange in some way, I considered myself to be an expert, and had even published a few monographs. Eventually, I think that she came to look on me as a mentor and friend. I also flatter myself that she found me physically attractive with my pale skin and unfashionably long black hair — a bohemian appearance always appeals to intellectuals, just think of Oscar Wilde.

Matters proceeded quite naturally, and it became our custom to take tea together in one of the many small cafes in the streets surrounding the university. From discussing her work, we proceeded to personal matters. I had to be very guarded in what I revealed about myself, merely telling her about my education in Paris, and the fact of my flight when it was clear that the Nazis were inevitably going to occupy that wonderful city and corrupt it with their barbarian ways — I had too many painful memories of barbarians in other places and at other times.

As her name implied, Eloise was French and had been born in Lyons in 1936. Her parents were Jewish, although she was not a worshipper at synagogue herself, and like me, they had fled to England in the early 1940s. They had come to Manchester with its large and well settled Jewish community and had bought a house in Didsbury where many other well-off Jews had their homes. She had moved out of the familial home after her first degree, and lived in a small flat in Fallowfield, which was still a select neighbourhood in those days.

My opportunity to advance matters to a more intimate level one day in early Spring. It happened that the Hallé Orchestra were giving a concert of French music from the first half of the twentieth century at the Free Trade Hall, under the baton of their acclaimed principal conductor Sir John Barbirolli. On the programme that night were well known works by Debussy and Ravel, and also a jazz inspired piece La Création Du Monde by Darius Milhaud, who like Eloise, was Jewish. I bought two tickets in the stalls and casually asked Emily if she would like to accompany me.

We had a very pleasant evening, and after the concert shared a drink in a local wine bar. As it was then late, I hailed a taxi and accompanied Eloise back to her flat, and like the gentleman that I am at heart — most vampires are not uncivilised — accompanied her to the front door of her apartment block. As we parted, she thanked me for a very pleasant evening, adding that she hoped we might do it again; I just lifted her hand to my lips and murmured that it had been my pleasure entirely.

In late June Eloise submitted her dissertation, and to celebrate the event, I asked her if she would like to join me for dinner at my home in Whalley Range. I took great care over the menu, just a few delicacies such as oysters and fine Beluga caviar to start, followed by grilled trout and asparagus, and finishing with warm zabaglioni, but nothing too heavy — there is nothing worse than a heavy meal if seduction is your aim. To accompany the meal, I thought that dry white wine for the main course and a sweet Muscadet to conclude were appropriate — enough to titillate the palate and relax the mind, but not to inebriate — drunken sex is most unsatisfactory.

We kissed for the first time as we relaxed over coffee and a small brandy seated side by side on a chaise longue. Our first kisses were tender and chaste, but Eloise displayed a surprisingly passionate side, and matters soon grew more heated. Many pleasant minutes were spent in ever more intimate exchanges, and Eloise did not repeal my caresses but returned my kisses with even greater passion; her desire matching mine in intensity.

At last, I suggested we might adjourn to the bedroom where we could continue in greater comfort. We undressed without embarrassment, and I was soon enchanted by the sight of her female form in all its perfection. Eloise was clearly not a virgin and was quite obviously as aroused as I was becoming. We were soon making love with total mutual abandon, and I luxuriated in the softness of her body beneath mine as we began that exquisite journey that leads to mutual ecstasy.

Experienced as I was, I held back on my own climax to grant my lover her orgasm first, knowing that the final climax would be of earth shattering intensity. I could feel the waves of pleasure washing through her body as she moaned and cried out in euphoric delight. Finally, I could hold back no longer, as the mounting waves of pulsating desire reached fever pitch.

At last the exquisite moment had arrived, the moment I had planned for since that very first moment that I saw her, the moment that every vampire lives and dies for. As I reached the pinnacle of physical pleasure, I tenderly nuzzled her neck, seeking the veins that carried the life-giving essence of her blood, sinking my teeth into her soft flesh. As her blood began to flow, I experienced for the first time in centuries that feeling of incandescent exhaltation as her life force flowed through my entire body. Oh, how I savoured the sweet moment, as the intoxication carried me to heights that no mortal human can ever know. In all my memory there had never been a victim as strong and vital as this young woman, and I truly felt like a god bestriding the world in majesty.

As she felt the agony of that bite, Eloise cried out, but the pain quickly became pleasure and amplified her pleasure to a level of supernatural bliss — the kiss of a vampire carries its own reward for the willing victim, and the prey will from that first possession forever seek its own destruction. I feasted at length, and with the loss of blood, Eloise soon fell into a deep and satiated sleep.

It is a misconception that the victims of a vampire must inevitably die. The loss of blood leaves them pale and weak, but it is only those vampires who are greedy who kill their prey. It is also another myth that the kiss of a vampire transforms their victim into one like them, condemned to life in the shades — vampires are born that way; it is their birthright.

But something totally unexpected happened to me as I gazed down at Eloise lying pale and still on the pillows, and I felt a mixture of emotions that I had never experienced before. My heart turned within me, and the realisation slowly permeated my drugged senses that I had fallen in love with this young woman, and with it a delight far greater than the intoxication of her life force — something far deeper and amazing. At that moment my craving left me, never to return and I was reborn, no longer my old self, but something new and glorious.

ooOoo

Eloise and I were married three months later after a short but extremely happy engagement. Over the years of blissful married life that followed it became apparent that a miracle had happened. Not only had a craving for blood left me, but I began to age — I was no longer a vampire. The love of a woman was my salvation, and unlike the Flying Dutchman, I was no longer condemned to a life of eternal wandering. I continued to find direct sunlight painful, but no more than any other pale skinned and blue eyed human being, but that was all that was left of my abnormal nature.

This all happened fifty years ago. Eloise died in my arms just a week ago, and I shall soon join her in a better life, my centuries of existence ended in sweet death.