Tatjana opens the doors to her
apartment and closes it fast. She leans against the door hard, taking in the
night and the moon. A small noise is heard near the patio. She walks into the
moonlight and opens the door, a whirlwind brushes her face and a black cat
leaps at her from the chair outside. A hint of surprise and happiness is
suddenly silenced as she listens outside, cradling her cat in the moonlight. A
book suddenly falls off the bookcase onto the floor, startling her cat to leap
onto the couch. She closes the patio door. She sits next to the cat and stares.
"Hey you. Are you my gift? Well, what shall I call you?" The cat rubs against her arm then jumps to sit on top of the fallen book. She picks up the book and read the cover, "The Eschatians." She puts the book down and picks the cat up, "I think I'll call you Eschka. Now be free and run now ok."
Tatjana explores the apartment, checking the small black fridge first. The white walls and purple carpet give an air of a weathly retreat, something Tatjana herself wanted when she lived in New York City. She had a cat. She nearly remembers.
She takes out the milk and pours it into a bowl, "Have you had dinner sweetie? Neither have I." She takes a hot shower, filling the apartment with steam. She wraps a black towel around and lays on the couch, wet hair dripping on the floor.
Flashes of airplane windows. Smoke brushes across her eyelids. Light flashes back into her eyes.
"I can never get comfortable in these seats." Neculai glares at her, but is intrigued. "Can you please not smoke." He tries to hold back a laugh, "Miss, it won't matter soon enough." Tatjana yanks out his cigarette and throws it into the stewardess trash bin rolling by their seats. Neculai leans to get up, but calms himself. Her beauty suddenly calms him. He stares at her with a raised eyebrow, "You owe me a cigarette, Miss." She laughs.
Neculai pulls out his lighter and begins to rotate it in his hands.
"Tell me your name."
She smiles and crosses her legs. She opens a magazine and sips from her coffee. He leans in close, "We have a very long flight Miss. I'm agasp with all your suspense." She glares at him with a slight smile. The air begins to turn tight with pressurization. She goes back to reading. He suddenly takes a hold of her hand, laying it flat on the fold down table. He begins to take out a pen. She is surprised, "What are you doing?"
"Shh. I'm enjoying myself with a little art. I enjoy art on a beautiful woman. How about you?" She gasps as he nears the pen, "I was thinking of a tattoo, perhaps." The pen touches her skin, "Don't fight me. I want to help you." She stares at him with a quizzical look and rests her hand flat. "Help me how?" She leans into him. He looks up at her, "I want to help you see me, for where I come from." She laughs, "Cryptic much?"
He unexpectedly lifts up her hand and kisses it, "That, Miss, is my existence." He leans closer to her and she does the same. "What will you draw on me?" He lays her hand down again and begins to draw a sigil, a design she knows nothing about nor has seen before. The pen glides across her skin, slowly hypnotizing her.
Turbulence shakes his pen and a break in the sigil etches across her skin. She gasps, "Wait, don't stop." He leans up and smiles. "How do you know I don't write a demonic seal on your beautiful skin?" He kisses her abruptly. She smiles and shakes her head, "I know nothing, only what I feel. Who are you? Tell me who you are."
"My name is Neculai. My mission here is cryptic by definition. But you, you are not meant to be here. In this time. I sense you want to know everything about everything, but you feel trapped here. I have given you a way to escape. Now, let me finish." He returns to a kiss and finishes his sigil without looking.
Tatjana jumps up from her couch, hair nearly dry from the cold night air. The patio door is hitting the chair outside and she turns abruptly around, her hair whips across her shoulders. The inviting patio moonlight is irresistible to her racing heart. "Neculai?"
Eschka's tail is playful. Tatjana walks towards the moonlight. She smirks, "You playful rascal, where are you?" Neculai stands in the center of the living room. He puts his finger to his lips eying Eschka. Tatjana turns around and breathes a sigh of relief. Neculai smiles, "I think she likes me." Tatjana shakes her head and walks straight towards him, stopping a few feet away. "Everyone is warning me about you. But why does my cat like you?" She tries to hide a glimmer of a smile.
He walks towards her, "They have all been careful. Your cat on the other hand..." he touches her face "has more of you in her." Her eyes lower, "And what is that?" He touches her hair, "Heart."
Neculai pulls her against his body. "Why aren't you careful Tatjana?" She closes her eyes, "I remember who you are." She opens her eyes, "I am grateful I can see you here Neculai." He kisses her and moves down her cheek and neck. "You say that now. You are innocent. Of pure heart. You have no idea the danger you are in Tatjana." She whispers, "Should I believe what others tell me about you? A secret keeper, a darkness dweller." He bites her ear playfully, "You better believe it." She laughs. She does not know the power her laugh has over him, like calming a lion before he feeds in the jungle.
She embraces him, he does the same. "You are the one constant I've had in all this mess." She buries her face in his hair, taking in his scent. "If I feel like this, please don't let you be my enemy." He holds her tight, "I will be honest and say I am not with the rebels. I work in the world of dark power. Power that is very seductive." She looks into his eyes, "Then I will ask..." She stops herself "Will you spend the night with me?" He nears his lips to hers but doesn't touch, "Is it cryptic for you?"
"Everything about you is cryptic, mysterious, seductive. I have come to the conclusion you are not human." He smiles bright and wide showing her his fangs for the first time. She suddenly gasps, her heart returns to racing. "You are brighter than most. Do you still want me to stay the night?"
She runs her eyes around his facial features, stopping on his eyes. "I wanted you since the airplane." He graces a finger down her neck, "You are not afraid?" He watches as her pupils dilate. "I have died once already. What more harm can there be for me?" He leans into her ear, "So much more angel, so much more." For the first time a shiver runs down her spine. "I know you know secrets. Perhaps terrible secrets. And perhaps you lust for power. But tonight all I want is for us to lust for each other." He bites her neck lightly. She moans but stops herself short, "Please let me trust you tonight and you can go back to being your usual cryptic self in the morning."
He picks her up into his arms. "I am capable of great dark power, as well as great love. You will have the trust you seek tonight." She kisses him hard and he takes her into the bedroom. She stands in the middle of the room, cradled in his arms, his teeth leaving marks every inch of her neck as love bites. He begins to undress her slowly, her head resting on his shoulder. He picks her up and sits on the bed. She straddles him and removes his clothes. Soon their naked bodies fuse together like fire, burning for each other. She begins to grind into him, her body covered in sweat. He bites her breasts and runs his nails down her back. The light scent of her blood nearing the surface of her back nearly pushes him over the edge.
They lay down on the bed and a demonic seal appears under them. Books, statues, and candles start to move and float across the bedroom. The demonic sigil lights up red and the same sigil reappears on her hand in a black color. Neculai hears a demon call for her soul and he grips her sigil wrist, tempted to touch it to the mattress sigil to unlock a dimensional portal under her. Her hand nearly touches the sigil, but her pulls her hand up and kisses it passionately. He wraps her arm around his neck, her writhing body is too much for him to resist. He snaps his fingers. The demon speaks no more and the sigil disappears.
"Neculai, what is it?" He stares past her and she tries to read his face. She sees a sigil light up in his pupils and she jolts up. "Neculai, your eyes! It's the same as....the plane, my hand." He jumps up and walks to the window. "You are not safe here...around me. Many will want you here." She stands up and holds him as he faces away, "No one will have me. Not even the ones from your dark government." He turns around, "There are things in many worlds and dimensions that are far worse than the government of Vescuru." He whispers in her ear, "Spirits and demons....they will want your soul. To join them."
She jumps up into his arms, "And what about you? What do you want?" He smiles, "You are playing with more than fire, with the essence of eons. The many dark aethyrs, before the beginning of time." She whispers in his ear, "They are gonna have to wait to get their hands on me. Do you mind?"
He laughs and grips her body, kissing her. Eschka jumps on the bed and purrs. "It looks like we have company."
Tatjana picks up Eschka and brings her to him. Eschka playfully paws his face. Tatjana's smile stops Neculai's undead heart. The cat's eyes match hers. Neculai senses Eschka's magic, he recognizes it. "Where did you get her?" Tatjana lifts her up in the air, "From a friend." Neculai senses who it may be.
"What did your friend at the bar say about me?" Tatjana eyes Neculai. "She told me more than the leader of the rebels did. She is my guardian, from the past. I trust her. She warned me about you."
Neculai walks up to her, "Tomorrow, come see me at Club Sigilzum. For you, your password is Lilithica." Tatjana lets Eschka drop to the ground and run off. "Well, a private invitation? I know what Lumina would say." Neculai picks up her hand and kisses over where the sigil disappeared. "No one receives invitations. Come see me, that is if you are brave enough."
Neculai can hear her heart start to race. Tatjana raises her hand and touches his hair. "Let's finish what we started. I will know in the morning." He picks her up and the moon disappears behind black clouds. A storm with severe rain and lightning produces colorful lights within the apartment. He gently caresses her hair and kisses her lightly, as Eschka nestles next to her asleep. They make love throughout the night and her sigil returns in moments of intense passion.
Tatjana wakes in the morning with Neculai in her arms. The cat is rolled in their bedroom sheets, cocooned. The sunlight grazes across his face slowly. She turns to touch his hair when she sees her sigil etched in black on her hand. She jumps up and the cat starts to lick her hand as she tries to wake Neculai. "Neculai, my hand, it's....back!" Neculai opens his eyes, with the left corner of his mouth angling up. "It is my gift. It allows you to see me here, in this dimension. Otherwise you would not be able to and I could startle you as an apparition or ghost would in your world." She stares at him curiously, "Then how did I see you on the airplane before you gave this sigil to me?"
Neculai kisses her, "My powers were visible to all at that time. I will explain later." She rotates her hand in the sunlight, "Is there a name for this sigil? Do you have a title for it?" He rubs her hand, "Yes, this particular one is called Sitrivual, it has important meaning and purpose. It has powers, demonic powers." She is silent for a moment, "I can see you, but is there a price for this?"
He begins to rub her cat, "Yes, but don't you think any price to see me would be worth it?"
Tatjana stands up and walks to the window. "I know nothing of your secret demonic world." She turns around, "Will I be protected from it?" Neculai stands and embraces her, "Your sigil opens your eyes and works as a portal at the same time. You fear the unknown and that is understandable. I am willing to help you understand so you have no fear, to show you how far your soul can go. Many entities will want you, I can certainly see why. You have been chosen to be here, for a greater purpose. But I am not your guide or guardian. I am, simply, a foe with my own purpose. Our paths have simply crossed. It is up to you whether or not you are willing to trust me."
She smiles, "Oh you're good." His eyes become enflamed with passion turning ruby red. Eschka wraps around Neculai's leg. "Well, Eschka likes you, so it's decided. I guess I'm just going to have to like you too." She smirks at him and laughs.
Neculai kisses her and lifts her up, carrying her into the living room. "Come see me at Club Sigilzum today, I will have a gift for you. Something special." Tatjana laughs, "Gifts and trinkets don't work on me." He bites her neck playfully, "It's hardly a trinket. I pursue power and I can offer it. I'm not in the business of trinkets. My business is of a higher calling."
Tatjana smirks, "What can be more powerful than the sigil you already placed on my hand?" He smiles, "Imagine unlocking doors or sealing doors to any dimension you wish at will. I can offer this to you and more." She embraces him and closes her eyes, "All for a glorious price. Perhaps you are here to tempt me away from my purpose." He whispers, "What I want from you is priceless."
"Do you think you can have anything that you want or anyone?" she asks. He smiles "Who do I have right now?" She runs her left up the side of his body, "I don't know who you think you are. But this spell you have me under, when it ends, I'm not sure you are ready to pay my price." She whispers softly, "The ones you serve may not like my demands."
"What I want I want for myself. Those I serve can burn. Don't believe me? Meet me tomorrow at my club. There is always a war for what is priceless. Soon you will understand."