Chapter 7 old Chapter 8 Vadoma goes to the Hotel Let's talk bout it!
Chapter 7 we are back with Vadoma again. This used to be chapter 10. I had all the chapters where Cosima and Jeffery are getting to know each other lumped together and decided to break them up. I felt it would move the story better, so readers would know that something else was going on in the darkness while our two main characters are casually interacting with each other in a normal everyday fashion.
Chapter 7 (old Chapter 8)
Vadoma’s body jerked as her eyes shot open. The nightmare again. Sweat covered her face and neck and she struggled against the ropes binding her to the bed frame. Her wrists and ankles burned from the chafing. She stopped her movement and relaxed her muscles against the dirty carpet. It was useless to struggle. They could at least tie her to the top of the bed where it would be more comfortable. The whole room started to close in on her as it always did when she was awake and inclosed. How could people live closed in all the time?
The nightmare left her drained. Her whole life the same dream plagued her sleep of a glowing blue door in a mountain. The dream always ended with being lost in a dead forest and the black eyed demon perusing her. She always awoke before he caught her, but it left her trembling every time.
The nightmare engulfed her life. Lately, it had intensified and she knew, deep down inside her bones, that the demon was real and would come for her. She left her family in Romania to protect them from her unknown future and came to the United States to escape. Unfortunately, her vampire father followed her and was caught by the same fucking hunters that kept her tied to this stinking bed frame; out of the frying pan and into the fire as they say.
They didn’t need to keep her tied up. She wasn’t going anywhere, not as long as the hunters had her father. The bastards kept her this way just to be cruel. The hate the four of them harbored toward vampires could fill a warehouse.
Why did her father follow her? If he’d stayed in Romania like she asked, she wouldn’t be in this predicament. But he loved her and wanted to protect her from whatever came for her. If only she could sense his location like she could the other vampires.
The hunters forced her to track a stupid vampire that allowed himself to be discovered. They followed him from New York to West Virginia and now, ironically, were camped out in his family’s old home. She delayed as much as she could to give him a chance to escape and give herself time to discover where her father was located. As soon as she was sure, she would escape these bastards and go free him.
She sensed another vampire in the area. A much older, more powerful female. She seemed to be following the fledgling. Vampires normally didn’t travel together. The female must be connected to the fledgling somehow, like her and her father. Maybe she created him. Maybe she was here to destroy him for being so stupid. Vadoma hadn’t revealed the presence of the second vampire to the hunters and didn’t plan to. Let them find out the hard way when she tore them to pieces. The hunters could continue chasing the fledgling for now. His stupidity got him in this situation, hopefully he learned quickly.
She closed her eyes and saw the black eyes of the demon burned on the back of her eyelids. No rest again tonight. She shifted from one side of her back to the other releasing the pain in her left side.
Footsteps creaked in the hall then the door to her room opened. A large dark skinned, dark haired man stood in the doorway. Federico. His bulk barely fit through. She wanted to kick or spit on him but he stood too far away.
“Vadoma, we’re about to leave for the hotel. Can you behave yourself while I untie you?” he said, his voice saturated with an Italian accent and sarcasm.
“Can you stop being an ass?” she said, smiling.
He grumbled something under his breath then walked over to her side of the bed. He untied the part of the ropes attached to the frame but left her hands and feet bound. Vadoma huffed when he threw her over his shoulder knocking the wind out of her lungs.
“You baboon! Watch what you’re doing, you’ll break my ribs!”
He ignored her and carried her down the hall through the dining room and into the kitchen. The other three waited at the table and rose when Federico entered the room.
“Just how do you plan to explain to the hotel people why I’m tied up?” Vadoma said, glaring at Chapman. She hoped her hateful stare burned a hole right in her forehead.
“You’re staying in the car.” Chapman said. “We won’t be there long.”
“What if the blood-sucker frees her?” Brandon, the private investigator asked.
“Yes, he could come back while we are in his room.” Chapman stared at Vadoma for a moment. “We’ll have to take her in with us. Leave her tied till we get there. I’m sure she’ll behave for her father’s sake. Plus, if she’s able to hold something of the vampire’s, maybe she can tell us where he’s located.”
The Italians sandwiched her between them in the back seat of the sedan. Chapman sat in the passenger seat while Brandon drove. She could barely breathe squished between their bulky arms. Hopefully, the hotel wasn’t too far or she might pass out.
No one spoke during the ride. Everyone seemed lost in their own worlds. She watched the dark countryside slowly transform into a small city. This place reminded her of home with its farms and barns dotting the dark hills. New York City had scared her when she first arrived. No cities in Romania had such monstrous buildings that seemed to swallow up everything around them. The life she left behind consisted of open fields and freedom, of ever changing scenery traveling with her family place to place. She longed for the fields and flowers and open spaces of home, of running free in the sun.
Vadoma jolted from her thoughts as the car finally turned into the parking lot of a Holiday Inn. They pulled into a space and Brandon shut the engine off.
“I’ll go alone and get a key to the vampire’s room,” Brandon said, “I’ll come back once I have it and we can go through the side door together.” Everyone else in the car nodded in agreement. What lie would he tell this time? It surprised her how easily Brandon fooled people. He’d probably walk right up and smile unleashing his perfect teeth and perfect hair on an unsuspecting young girl and she would hand him the key without question. Almost like a vampire compelling a human. It only took a few minutes and he returned with a room key in hand.
Federico untied her feet first and then her hands. The temptation to kick him in the face and run for it overwhelmed her, but she controlled herself.
“Don’t try anything,” he whispered in her ear. “Or your father becomes barbeque.”
As they approached the building, a shudder traveled up her spine. The female vampire lurked close by. Why did she follow them here? She continued willingly between the two Italians not looking anywhere except at the door ahead of them. Strength and age radiated from the vampire’s aura. She could tear them all apart with no trouble. Would she attack in a public place like this?
Brandon swiped the key in the door and they all entered the side door of the building. It looked recently renovated in some god-awful retro style. Gaudy abstract paintings covered the walls and everything else was saturated with yellow and black. They followed Brandon to an elevator and he hit the button for the third floor. The elevator doors groaned and popped as they slowly slid closed. Her body tensed and she struggled to control her breathing. She closed her eyes and pictured a wide open sunlit meadow.
Vadoma sensed the vampire’s aura in the building getting closer. She followed them, why? Did she plan to kill them in the room? If the female knew they were hunters, she just might. The doors staggered open again and they exited onto the third floor. The hall was bigger, but not by much. She still felt trapped in a cage. The hall appeared empty. Locked rooms lined the walls each of them numbered 302, 304, 306. They stopped in front of 310 and Brandon swiped the key. The light turned green and they pushed their way into the room. No light and the smell of stale smoke and Fabreeze assaulted her nose. Chapman groped around in the dark for a switch, and after a second or two, light flooded the room. Housekeeping had cleaned already and there were no bags or suitcases anywhere. Maybe the fledgling had finally smartened up or the older vamp took him out already. The aura grew stronger, closer, as the hunters searched the room for any evidence the fledgling might have left behind. Her heart quickened and she secretly searched for exits and makeshift weapons in case the older vampire attacked.
“There’s nothing here.” Federico’s gruff accent broke the silence as he pulled the drawers open.
“Well, he didn’t check out yet,” answered Brandon, “He still has the room booked for a few more nights.”
Chapman glanced over at Vadoma, and then she stared intently. “Do you feel him nearby?”
“No,” she said looking directly at Chapman.
“What’s wrong, Vadoma.” Chapman walked over and studied her face. Vadoma had to look down. Chapman only stood five foot tall and she stood over six foot.
“The vampire’s near, isn’t he?”
“Of course he is,” she lied, “I’m sure he’s watching us. He must know you’re on to him by now.”
Chapman and Brandon exchanged concerned stares, and then the phone rang. No one moved. It rang again. Brandon reached to answer it.
“No, don’t answer it. He may be checking to see if anyone’s here,” Chapman said.
Or maybe the female called to let them know she would slaughter them in ten seconds. The ringing grated Vadoma’s nerves. It finally stopped and a red light blinked on the phone.
“Voicemail,” Chapman said, “Go ahead and check it.”
Brandon lifted the receiver and started pushing numbers. Vadoma’s thoughts turned in every direction. Should she open her mind to the female? Vampires were so unpredictable. Years of endless death made them mad sometimes. Forcing herself into the female’s mind might attract her in a negative way. If she wasn’t already on her way to kill them, she would be then. Brandon scrambled to write something down.
“Some girl named Cosima. She left her number. I can use it to find her address. He might be using her as a blood source. We could stake her house out and catch him,” Brandon said.
“Why don’t you question her tomorrow? Maybe she’s a vampire too. We’ll also watch the house and see if John shows up there.”
“That was a lucky break,” Federico’s brother Martino said, “Her calling while we were here. Now maybe we’ll finally catch this prick and stake him.”
Chapman’s face twisted. “Yes, it was. What else did she say?”
“She hoped he was feeling better. I don’t think she knows what he is, and I’m pretty sure she’s just human.”
“Yes, but just in case, we need to be cautious.”
The aura began to move farther away. Vadoma’s heart relaxed. Chapman stared at her again and her eyes narrowed.
“It’s time to go.” Chapman’s eyes stayed on her as she spoke. “There’s nothing else here. Brandon, you’ll talk to the girl tomorrow morning.”
As they left the building, the female vampire’s aura disappeared.