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    Real Strategy Requires Cunning

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phargle

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The starting paragraph framed things pretty much perfectly - I missed the header with the date, and immediatly thought upon reading the descriptions, "Huh, this must be 1792."

The conversations that follow and certainly odd, and Temple Franklin hasn't given indications that he's unprepared to hear what Scott has to say. . . although I suspect that's largely a narrative device to split up Franklin and Abraham later on in the story. If Huard gets his hands on the eye, which has somehow made it from Vienna to London to New York, whoever is talking to Scott from behind the scenes is bound to take it from him. And if Franklin has any of his grandfather's ability, keeping him away would be imperative to their designs.

I also see a link between Huard's London accent and the route of the eye to America, but that's shapes in clouds at this point. Huard couldn't know, making it more likely that Huard is related to someone who dragged the eye overseas rather than that he brought it himself, which just didn't happen. And that would tie into the final comments in the update relative to Huard's unwitting complicity in the caper. Maybe Scott and Vampirella connived to make sure that the son or grandson of whoever brought the eye across the ocean would be the one to give it back to them.
 

stnylan

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He has nerve, does Huard. Perhaps that is what she - whoever she may be - sees in him. A nerve that could take him through what must be.
 

TreizeV

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Very interesting update. It seems these vampires are more organized than we thought, and it does seem that humans may be involved in it, i mean, aren't vampires supposed to be unable to cross open water? How else can they get to America ;o


Does this feminine vampire have anything to do with the one from update one I wonder...
 

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Very interesting update. It seems these vampires are more organized than we thought, and it does seem that humans may be involved in it, i mean, aren't vampires supposed to be unable to cross open water? How else can they get to America ;o

If I remember my Bram Stoker (memory's very rusty), the preferred method for long-distance vampirical transshipment would be to have the vampire buried in a casket in sand, which can then be sailed to wherever is desired. Of course, that merely reinforces your point: the vampire would need some human cohorts or minions to get the logistics taken care of. :)
 

coz1

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Fb-fb:

The starting paragraph framed things pretty much perfectly - I missed the header with the date, and immediatly thought upon reading the descriptions, "Huh, this must be 1792."

The conversations that follow and certainly odd, and Temple Franklin hasn't given indications that he's unprepared to hear what Scott has to say. . . although I suspect that's largely a narrative device to split up Franklin and Abraham later on in the story. If Huard gets his hands on the eye, which has somehow made it from Vienna to London to New York, whoever is talking to Scott from behind the scenes is bound to take it from him. And if Franklin has any of his grandfather's ability, keeping him away would be imperative to their designs.

I also see a link between Huard's London accent and the route of the eye to America, but that's shapes in clouds at this point. Huard couldn't know, making it more likely that Huard is related to someone who dragged the eye overseas rather than that he brought it himself, which just didn't happen. And that would tie into the final comments in the update relative to Huard's unwitting complicity in the caper. Maybe Scott and Vampirella connived to make sure that the son or grandson of whoever brought the eye across the ocean would be the one to give it back to them.
Temple will have more to come to terms with soon. You are right, good 'ol narrative device so I can split up my guys. But it does make some sense that Scott might not want the young man to hear - he has ulterior designs which will become clearer soon. You are on to something in your last paragraph, but not saying just yet what. Read on. :D

He has nerve, does Huard. Perhaps that is what she - whoever she may be - sees in him. A nerve that could take him through what must be.
Good thought there. Stay with that.

Very interesting update. It seems these vampires are more organized than we thought, and it does seem that humans may be involved in it, i mean, aren't vampires supposed to be unable to cross open water? How else can they get to America ;o


Does this feminine vampire have anything to do with the one from update one I wonder...
Heh. I did not honestly consider that as I am still reading up on my vampire lore and practices. But let us assume one can cross water much as Stuyvesant outlines below. When and if the time comes to explain such, I'll fit that in there. And good eye for your second thought. They very much could be the same.

If I remember my Bram Stoker (memory's very rusty), the preferred method for long-distance vampirical transshipment would be to have the vampire buried in a casket in sand, which can then be sailed to wherever is desired. Of course, that merely reinforces your point: the vampire would need some human cohorts or minions to get the logistics taken care of. :)
And I assume that there are a few human accomplices along the way. I have a few in mind, actually. One we may meet soon. As well as Scott. Let us also remember that a vampire may be able to seduce, a trait I've utilized here. ;)


To all - I've got another update coming later today. Thanks again for your great comments. Writing this is pretty darn fun and your comments make it even more so. :)
 

coz1

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LongestNightbanner.png



* * *

New York City, 1792

Ebenezer Scott lay in his bed, the candle out and the darkness around him almost comforting. He had seen progress that day, finding Huard and sending him on his way. She would do well by him, Ebenezer thought. Huard would be able to carry out the task, he was sure. The man had a strong heart and a moral compass, as best as he could tell. She would have to be the final judge. He rolled over and breathed in a heavy sigh. Nearly all of his eighty-two years had been spent in touch with this…he still did not know what to call it. Whatever the force, it required protection. Perhaps they had accomplished it…for now.

In the silence of the night, he heard a sound in the front of the shop. Likely only rats, Scott still got up from his bed and pulled a robe round his body. He walked through the curtain, stopping to look around. Moonlight from outside glowed through the front windows, but nothing seemed amiss. He was about to shift and go back to bed when another sound echoed out in the street. Walking slowly towards the front door, he carefully unlocked and opened it. He stepped out two or three paces and still saw nothing. He started to turn and go back inside when a third sound echoed out. A cart on a side street perhaps, but it sounded as if coming closer.

“Come out from there?” Ebenezer Scott yelled out. He received no answer. He waited for a second or two and muttered sotto voce, “Come on in and buy something but do not huddle about in the dark. Damn nuisance.”

Hearing nothing further, he turned finally and walked back into his shop. He closed the door behind him and locked it, giving an extra look outside as he did so. Shrugging his shoulders, he returned to bed. His mind was racing and his heart beating fast, but he soon found his thoughts return to Huard. As he covered himself with his blanket, he let his eyes close and breathed deeply. A solid rest tonight and tomorrow he would know. He rolled on his side and began to fall asleep.

Seconds later, a creak on the floor boards above made him tense up his muscles. He rolled on his back and stared up, frozen and barely breathing. He could hear the small amounts of breath he was taking in and worried. She was gone. She’d left as soon as nightfall had come. Then who was upstairs? Slowly, he moved to touch his feet to the cold stone floor. Lifting from the bed with as much patience as his old frame allowed, he quietly crossed the room. He pulled a box from under the table and lifted the lid. He had not time enough to do anything else as a voice called out from behind him.

“It has been too long, Ebenezer Scott.”

Scott turned quickly, frightened and his heart pounding even more. He tried to peer through the darkness but could not make out the face, only the shape. And it spoke again.

“Where is the Eye, Ebenezer?”

“I…I don’t have it,” he called out, knowing it would come to no avail. He quickly turned again and tried to pull an object from the box, but the shape was on him. It lifted his body from the floor and sent it crashing on top of the bed, nearly buckling the wooden legs.

Something cracked and Ebenezer lay there unable to move. His breathing was labored and his entire body hurt. But he’d kept hold of the object from the box, a long object tied in a cloth. He tried desperately to untie it with his numb fingers but he could not in time. The shape was on him again, hovering right above his face. The two were eye to eye and even in the darkness, Ebenezer Scott could swear he saw light far back in the darkness.

“Sebastion!” Scott called out.

“The same,” the shape answered, curling his face into a sick smile.

Suddenly, Scott was pulled up and made to sit with his back against the wall. Sebastion moved to the other side of the room and with his fingers, caused the candle to flame. Light filled the room and first, Ebenezer wanted to scream, but he steeled himself and looked into Sebastion’s eyes. They were cold and heartless, as dead as his body.

“You will never find it!” Scott yelled as he fumbled again with the object in his hands.

“If I shall not find it with you, then I shall kill you. ‘Tis a shame as Selene finds you such assistance. But every man has his day. I had my own too long ago. It is time you joined me.”

“NO!” Scott shouted and he finally pulled the object free from the cloth, two strings dangling between his fingers as he held the empty cloth with his other hand. It was a stake made of silver and he held it up as if protection.

Sebastion laughed, “You should have strength to use that but alas, you do not. But try if you are able.”

Ebenezer Scott did not have the strength, but he held it aloft anyway. Sebastion watched him with curiosity for a time and then looked to the candle. “I will not make you one of us. You’d be far too knowledgeable. But you shall die, Ebenezer Scott. And I shall find what it is I seek. I can feel it already, the energy of it pulsating in my head. I will find it.”

Suddenly, Sebastion blew from his mouth and the candle went out shrouding the room in darkness once more. A scream could be heard and then a metallic object falling to the floor. From two bodies on the bed, only one was to rise. He staggered a bit at first, but gained his balance and then moved to the front room leaving the second body behind. He walked through the shop and unlocked the front door, opening it to feel the rush of cool air brush over him. Out into the street he walked, the moonlight over head strong. He looked down into his hand and saw the cloth, two strings attached and dangling.

The fool…the self righteous fool, Sebastion thought to himself. He knew he would find the Eye. Anyone that stood in his way would die. For a second time if necessary.

SebastionShadow.jpg


* * *

New York City, 1792

He ran through the woods, a strength within him from some place he was unaware. He could not stop and no longer knew where he was, if he ever did. But then a voice called out - a soft feminine voice,

“Abraham Huard.”

He stopped and held in place, not breathing heavily though his head seemed to throb. And the hunger…the hunger would not leave him. He listened in the darkness and soon heard it again, this time closer,

“Abraham Huard.”

Finally, he called out, “I am here!”

Directly behind him, he heard the voice a third time, “As am I.”

But it wasn’t the third time he’d heard the voice. Suddenly it began to come back to him. He was lying in the street and a woman saved him. He was in her bed and she was nursing him to health. He was…naked and in the middle of a cemetery and here she was again. What had she done?

“You have questions. And of course you should.”

“Questions?” he heard himself ask.

She smiled at him and bade him to follow her, “You will know all soon enough, Abraham Huard.”

He followed her without question, perhaps some small part of him hoping she would feed him. Her eyes were mesmerizing as well, and he could not help but gaze into them each time she turned to look back. She led him out of the cemetery and through the night, back to her home. Huard recognized it immediately. Then he began to remember more…he had been here when attacked…and he’d been looking for…the Eye.

“You have it!” he stopped and called out to her in the middle of the street.

She turned and looked into his eyes again, “Not here. Come inside, Abraham, and I will tell you all.”

He gladly followed, again taken in by her spell. They moved up the stairs and she opened the front door, turning back to him with another smile, “Won’t you come in?”

He did as beckoned and followed her into a front room with little furniture but each piece special and likely costly. He shook his head as he thought of that. He’d not thought of such things it felt for some time and it was strange to him. As if the thought no longer mattered. She saw him looking around and off into thought and snapped him from it.

“Sit, Abraham. I imagine you are thirsty.”

“Yes, my lady!” he eagerly answered, his mouth seeming to moisten at the thought.

“Are you prepared to feed?”

“Yes,” he replied instantly.

She left the room and Abraham to his thoughts and he could think of nothing more than sating his hunger. It seemed a million years before she returned with a pitcher made of pottery and a glass. She poured and out came a thick red liquid, splashing into the glass and seeming to ooze down the side. Abraham felt his face grow flush and his body tremble as he watched it, the liquid looking like a fresh glass of cool water. She finally finished pouring and set the glass down on the table, backing away.

“Feed.”

He wasted no time in crossing the room and pulling the glass to his lips, taking in each drop as if it was the only one offered. He was messy about it and when he lowered the empty glass; his chin was covered in rich, sticky blood. His feral grin to follow completed the picture.

“More!” he begged.

“No. You have had enough.”

“Please?!” he nearly fell to his knees.

“NO!” she shouted and pointed for him to sit.

Abraham backed away in fright and sat on the plush fainting couch. She walked forward and stood over him, her face stern. “You will not be able to feed like that always. It will not be so dignified.”

He looked up at her, not understanding and she turned away from him to walk towards a large fireplace. She looked down into the smoldering embers and was quiet causing Abraham to almost leave his seat and go to her. Finally she turned again and spoke.

“Your life has changed, Abraham Huard. Are you aware of that?”

“What has happened to me?” he looked sadly upon her.

Her answer came in a sickly sweet voice, “You are…vampire.”
 

J. Passepartout

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That upsets the hypothesis that this all was a flashback. It is worrying but there does seem to be a disagreement among the evil ones. Let us see.
 
Last edited:

robou

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That is a.... wow.... a twist and a half. I did not see that coming. So scott is dead and Sebastion is on the war path, so now it is Vampires vs. Vampires? But what of Temple? I reckon he will come in a save the day by freeing Huard from the Vampiric grips! Woo! Go Temple!
 

stnylan

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But of course. She would not abandon him, for he is her asset. Her play. Sebastion does his dirty work himself, but this lady appears to desire to set something up a little distance from herself.

He has to exist with his altered state now. That will not be easy, but then Huard was already a little possessed as far ago in London, thirsty with a different hunger. Now perhaps he is given the sort of existence that can withstand his famished intellect even as it makes new demands on gut and gullet.
 

Lord Durham

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When do you introduce the Lycans? :)

Great stuff, coz. The setting is properly moody, Scott's frantic terror quite palpable. Sebastion definitely seems like a fangs-on kind of vampire, while the lady appears to be a touch more subtle in her methods.
 

phargle

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Stupid vampires. What do they know? Always sucking on blood and things like that . . . looks like Scott blew it, in a manner of speaking, both with his dispatch of Huard and with his getting totally killed by a vampire. I guess that vampire chick alluded to in the previous chapter either signed off on this or decided to go out for a stroll at a really inopportune time.
 

J. Passepartout

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I guess that vampire chick alluded to in the previous chapter either signed off on this or decided to go out for a stroll at a really inopportune time.

This really is the kicker. If she merely wandered off at the wrong time, Huard has a chance of retaining some form of morality even if he becomes a vampire, but if the former we have a horrendous plot...
 

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This really is the kicker. If she merely wandered off at the wrong time, Huard has a chance of retaining some form of morality even if he becomes a vampire, but if the former we have a horrendous plot...
Ultimately it will be Huard's choice whether or not to retain his morality, the lady can only influence him. She cannot choose for him.

The for all we know the lady could be motivated by the purest of motives in abandoning Scott. Or maybe not. I suspect the truth is somewhere inbetween. Perhaps she will serve what is right not because she is inherently good, just because she is opposed to one who is inherently worse.
 

J. Passepartout

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Ultimately it will be Huard's choice whether or not to retain his morality, the lady can only influence him. She cannot choose for him.

The for all we know the lady could be motivated by the purest of motives in abandoning Scott. Or maybe not. I suspect the truth is somewhere inbetween. Perhaps she will serve what is right not because she is inherently good, just because she is opposed to one who is inherently worse.

You make good points but I would add that it probably is easier for him to retain his own conscience if there is demonstrably the choice to be made.
 

stnylan

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You make good points but I would add that it probably is easier for him to retain his own conscience if there is demonstrably the choice to be made.
That is true. But the lady so far has shown one capacity Sebastion clearly lacked - she has obviously worked with Scott. Abandoned him yes, but worked with him. Sebastion clearly does not work with mortals.
 

comagoosie

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Wow. Unexpected to say the least. What is going to happen I can only guess. I assume good ole Abe will still be good, but I don't know if I can continue to hope for that. Two vampires racing for the eye? I like it, though the mysterious woman is the root of it. She is probably the mastermind that pits her pets (vampires) against each other so that she can have the prize (eye).