The Corrupted, the Cursed and the Crazed

Chapter 1

Chapter 1

Mr. Jameson was late for dinner once again. It was getting dark and he had promised to be home by 5 of the O’clock. Darkness was rapidly upon him as he raced through the streets of Newcastle. The only people who were still out were men coming home from work. The lively sounds of the tavern filled his ears as he walked down the street. His wife will be furious with him if he was late again.

He reached the alley that leads to his home when he heard a most peculiar noise. It sounded like a whooshing sound. Mr. Jameson stopped and looked over his shoulder. The wind was icy and it gave his skin a pale look to it. Frost had lined the floor, which created an icy carpet on the cool earth. He could see his own set of footsteps but nothing to indicate someone was behind him. Mr. Jameson shrugged and continued on his way. He got a further few feet before he distinctly heard a chuckle from behind him.

This time he looked behind him in fear and discovered a man standing there in the cold. He looked around 25 and his skin was deathly pale. The man had brown hair and silvery eyes that practically shone in the darkness. He had very handsome features; they were boyish and dangerous all at the same time. The man was of average height and build. He wore a British Army red jacket that was unbuttoned, which revealed a white shirt underneath. He had a thick silver chain around his neck, which held some sort of Celtic symbol.

His trousers were black and dusty while his shoes were tough leather boots that looked like it had seen better days. The man smiled cruelly at him, which sent shivers up his spine.

“Don’t you know it’s dangerous to be alone at this time of night?” he smirked; Mr. Jameson could detect a strong Irish accent.

Mr. Jameson decided to ignore him so he tried to push past him but the man pushed him back with inhuman strength. He doubled back and fell on the ground roughly. The man began to laugh and moved slowly towards him.

“Don’t be so rude” the man patronized him.

To his intense disbelief the man’s face became brittle and veiny. He suddenly grew fangs and wore a hungry expression on his face. Mr. Jameson screamed like any sane man would.

“Who are you?” the man stuttered in disbelief.

“I’m Nathanial Connor and I’m going to eat you,” he announced smugly.

Nathaniel lunged for him and bite him roughly on the neck. The let out a panicked scream as the vampire ate every last morsel. After a few minutes his dinner was complete and he pushed the bloodless corpse onto the frozen ground. Little did he know that a familiar friend was watching his action with amusement.

“Oh Nathanial” he said, “You do like to play with your food don’t you?”

The vampire smiled and turned round to see Ethan de Morley standing before him. Ethan and Nathanial went back centuries, they’d been close friends for a long time. They were part of a vampire pack that lived and hunted together. Vampires had to be either part of a group or be exiled and live alone. Most vampires chose to be part of a pack because that means your chance of survival greatly improves. There were three others who were apart of their pack. There was Sophia who was Ethan’s sister, they were 400 years old and were the strongest members of the pack. The third oldest was Nathaniel who was 281, he was the son of an Irish Lord so privilege and pleasure was what he was brought up with.

Emilia was born in France during the 17th century, very little is known about because she refuses to talk about her past as a human. The youngest of the pack is Nestor who was a Russian and only 90 years old, he was the son of a murderer who was executed. They were a tight pack that sticks together like family.

“You know me too well Ethan” Nathaniel smiled.

“Come, I wish to talk to you” Ethan sounded serious.

Nathaniel’s wore a curious expression as he walked back up the alley with his companion.

“Nothing serious I hope” Nathanial grinned.

Ethan had met a beautiful girl who was so full of life. Her name was Lydia and she was married but she hated her husband. She was a miserable thing with her husband being a drunk. Lydia was an intriguing woman who fascinated him. They’d met up a few times over the past month and Ethan was sure that he didn’t want to lose her when his pack moved on next week. He was seriously considering turning her so they can be together forever. It’s been a long time since he’d felt this way about anybody.

Before he turned her he’d need the permission of the vampire pack. Every time they either turn someone or add a vampire to their pack, they must vote on it. Currently they were staying at the vacated home of the Duke of Newcastle. His family was not one’s to shelter in crypts. They vacated only the finest places because that’s what they deserved, nothing but the best.

Vampires could hypnotize humans, run inhumanly fast but they couldn’t enter a home without being invited in. Their one weakness was basil strangely enough. When the vampire’s entered the residence they could automatically smell heavy perfume and the sound of violins playing Beethoven. The sound of a girlish giggle came from the next room. The mansion was elaborately decorated with huge paintings of important people from long ago. The walls were turquoise, which was crowded with these paintings and huge over-the-top mirrors with frames of pure gold.

The furniture was a mix of antiques and modern conveniences. A huge impressive chandelier was in almost every room. The fireplaces were also big and imposing. Nathaniel and Ethan followed the sound of the music and the giggle. Ethan’s sister was sitting on a plush sofa having her feet rubbed by some human man. Another man was fanning her with a great ostrich feather while a blonde man was playing the violin beautifully.

“You’ve been sampling the delights of Newcastle I see” Nathaniel jeered.

“Like you haven’t” she shot back.

Sophia de Morley had long blonde hair that was currently tied up in a bun. Her eyes were a cold blue that would rival the merciless sea itself. Sophia’s skin was flawless and of course deathly pale, her face was beautiful and her figure desirable. Her dress was of gold and of purple that was the color of royalty. She firmly believed that humans were just there to turn, play with and feed from.

Nathaniel answered her quip with a shrug and sat down on the nearest chair. Ethan remained standing and asked his little sister to send her toy’s away. She pouted and protested but when he said it was important she sent them away.

“Where are Emilia and Nestor?” Ethan queried.

“Emilia and Nestor are right here” came Nestor in his strong Russian tongue.

Nestor and Emilia had entered the room and had sat themselves down on the nearest couch. Nestor looked in his thirties was skin like a corpse. His hair and his moustache had highlights of grey while is eyes were grass green. He had an impressive build like his whole human life had been spent doing manual labor.

Emilia on the other hand had fiery red hair and blood-red lips. Her skin was also pale which contrasted with her hair and her lips. Emilia’s eyes were a golden brown that looked deep and experienced. She looked in her late twenties and she wore a simple green dress that suited her skinny figure. She had an urban beauty about her that drew many mortals to her.

“I’m glad you’re all here because I have some news” Ethan announced.

“Then get on with it” Nathaniel teased.

Ethan decided to ignore him and continue like he’d never heard him.

“I have met a human woman called Lydia Wickham. I enjoy her society and I think I have grown to have strong feelings for her. It is my wish to turn her and bring her into the pack” Ethan revealed.

There were a few seconds of silence because Ethan was rarely the one to turn someone let alone to fall in love. It was usually Sophia, Nathaniel or Nestor and occasionally Emilia who turned people. Sophia did it for boredom, Nathaniel did it for sport, Nestor only turned people he thought the world shouldn’t lose and Emilia only did when she thought she was in love. In 400 years Ethan had only turned one person so you can understand what a surprise this was.

“You desire to turn someone?” Sophia questioned in disbelief.

“I do” Ethan answered with conviction.

The pack of vampires went into deep thought about whether to agree to his request. Ethan waited while he studied their faces. Sophia still looked shocked; Nathaniel looked a cross between amused and curious. Emilia looked like she was calculating something in her head while Nestor simply wore a blank expression on his face. It seemed to take forever before one of them finally spoke.

“Are you willing to take responsibility for her?” Nestor asked.

“Yes, I will train her and take full responsibility for her” Ethan agreed.

“Let’s put it to a vote” Sophia suggested, “All those in favor of letting Ethan turn this girl please put up your hand”

All of them except Emilia put up her hand. Sophia just shrugged at her and announced that she’d been over ruled. When questioned on why she didn’t want Ethan to turn Lydia she simply said that another set of fangs increases the expense and the risk. Ethan argued that another set of fangs would make the pack stronger.

“We’ll see” Emilia stated.

Ethan was filled with happiness at the idea of turning Lydia...

Rock-a-bye baby, in the treetop

When the wind blows the cradle will rock,

When the bough breaks the cradle will fall,

And down will come baby, cradle and all

Lydia was softly singing to her infant daughter. A light wind was flooding in from the windows. Her baby was wrapped up tight as she sang her a lullaby. It was the same one her mother used to sing for her when she was a baby. It made her feel a deep pang of unhappiness. The only light in her dark world was her daughter and that man she’d been courting. Ethan was a fine and mysterious man. She did believe that she had strong feelings for him.

George burst into the room as drunk as usual. He knew not to come into this room and disturb the baby. Lydia stood up to face him; he stunk of gin that made her want to be sick. George roughly kissed her as tried to undo her dress. Lydia firmly slapped him in the face because she couldn’t help it; she’d had enough of his vile behavior. He looked stunned at her actions.

He came towards her slowly with rage clearly busting his banks. George hit her harder then she’d ever been hit in her life. Her skin burned from the assault. Lydia tried to grab the child but he’d already come at her ready to strike again. In the nick of time she managed to save the child from her father’s temper. It was at his moment that Ethan had arrived though she hadn’t heard him enter. George looked at Ethan was obvious distaste.

“Who is this?” George spat.

“Ethan please help me!” Lydia begged.

George looked between them and laughed bitterly.

“You dare to touch another man’s wife?” George roared, looking intimidating.

Ethan’s features suddenly changed, his skin became crusty and bitter. His teeth even grew fangs. Lydia almost gaped in surprise while George just stood there in dumb shock.

“What are you?” George asked in a revolted tone.

“I am a creature of the night” Ethan told him calmly before snapping his neck.

Lydia watched George stumble and fall to the ground. Her eyes widened in surprise as he dropped down completely and utterly dead. Her husband was dead! Lydia stood stiff from shock. Ethan waited for her to recover before saying anything. Her attention snapped back to her rescuer. What was he? Who was he really? Has he been lying to her this whole time? Lydia needed answers.

“What are you?” Lydia repeated her husband’s question.

“I’ve told you” Ethan said slowly, “I’m a creature of the night, a vampire”

Vampire? She’d never heard of the term before but it sounded otherworldly. Lydia was terrified of this man suddenly and yet she felt safe for the first time in years. She picked up her child and put her back in the cradle before asking him any more questions.

“What’s a vampire?” Lydia demanded.

“A vampire is an immortal, nocturnal creature that lives off human blood” Ethan educated her, “We are stronger than any human, we can hypnotize people and we are can run at amazing speeds. We never get ill and we stay young forever”

Lydia didn’t know what to think or feel. This was beyond her mortal understanding. Men live, get sick and die. This is the way of the world so the mere thought of immortal beings made her head spin. Panic and confusion seemed to consume her mind. How can all this be true?

“Are you going to hurt me?” Lydia inquired.

“No” Ethan shook his head, “In fact I want you to join the undead”

Lydia looked deep in thought, could she do it? The mere idea of having that amount of power made her swoon. Being immortal would mean that no one could harm her ever again; she’d be powerful and feared. The only thought that cropped up in her mind was her daughter. Sensing her thoughts, he answered before she could speak.

“Make sure your daughter becomes your second eldest sister’s ward,” he suggested, “Your daughter would want for nothing. If she stays with a widowed and disgraced woman then she’ll have no prospects”

Ethan was right, Elizabeth and Mr. Darcy could give her a much better life then she could. It was for the best after all. A tear ran down her cheek but she nodded at Ethan’s plan.

“I have only one request” Lydia began.

Ethan stroked her soft hair with his pale fingers.

“What is it?” he asked lovingly.

“If I am to turn then my sister Kitty must turn too”

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