They now learn how cold his darker side can be.
Ivan decided to put someone in front of her with a large blade, just to intimidate her. Of course, it had no effect, because she knew what they did not, and every passing moment was being broadcast to the knowing parties. Both Ren and Jean-Claude wanted to go postal, and they had to fight the urges to do so, lest harm come to Anjou. Both Ren and the posse arrived at about the same time. Ren instantly wanted to go in, but Victor intervened, saying that that behavior could jeopardize the life of his sister. In his state of mind, he snapped, “Out of my way, human: this is not your fight, and I take no orders from your kind!”
He was ready to backhand Victor when Jean-Claude caught his hand. “This is his fight as much as ours!” he growled, “I want to kill those things in there so bad, my penis is hard!”
“How is any of this his fight?” snarled Ren.
“His kind is as much at threat as ours,” said Jean-Claude, “Besides, Elda would never forgive him if anything happened to Anjou, and he had done nothing.”
Ren resisted for a moment or two more, and then relented. He then said, “It’s only because you have proven trustworthy, mule, that I even listen to you,” and he yanked his hand down. He then said, “What’s your plan?”
“It’s already happening now,” said Jean-Claude, as he pointed to the shack where they were. The entire roof was crawling with bats. “Ren,” he then said, “on my cue, cut the power. We’re going to mess with them at first. Then I am going to use the bats to mess with them, and then try to find out who is in charge. I would like them alive, but if not, make it horrible for them.”
At this, some of the bats were making their way into the hut, and chaos was about to ensue.
Inside, Anjou had healed up, but she had the renegades doing all they could to ridicule her, and talk down her father. They were trying to terrify her, but they had no idea that this was a useless gesture. Anjou well knew that help lay only 30 meters away or so, and her bats were informing her to be ready for chaos. They told her not to move from her spot unless she was in danger. As one sat their trying to intimidate her, two bats flew in front of his face. He shook it off, knowing that old buildings like this may have bats in them, although he found it odd that they would either not be hunting, or hibernating for that matter. However, not too long after, a few screeches were heard. A few more bats buzzing the vampires head followed this. What they did not see was about three bats go behind the hands of Anjou and start to gnaw off the ropes on her wrists. Ivan did not like the feeling in the room, and he said, “You’d better not be playing games, girl.”
He rose up a dagger, as if he was going to harm her, but she stared at him, saying, “I am not valuable to you?”
He sneered, and said, “Not enough to damage the product!”
Before he could move, bats came out of everywhere, buzzing all over Ivan, and then over the six in the room. They swung in vain at the bats around them, but they could not inflict any damage. At this, Anjou stood, and looked at Ivan, saying, “You should have let me go. Now, death is going to seem a welcome thing to you.”
When she said that, she raised her hand. When she did, Ivan flew backwards hard into the wall. When that happened, the lights went out. They had enhanced vision to see in the dark, and even somewhat of sonar. However, the bats were interfering with that, and they were making it hard to see, even with their enhanced vision. One of them finally found the door, and then he went flying backwards with the door. It was Jean-Claude, and he thrust forward, slicing the vampire to ribbons. He fell to the floor, bleeding profusely. However, Jean-Claude did not take off his head. He let him lay there in pain, and then dragged him out, tied him in a sturdy chain. He knew that he did not have a lot of blood left to have strength to break the chain, and he would then spend time trying to heal up. However, Jean-Claude hung him from the pier in the salt water, knowing the torturous pain that he would be feeling. He knew that the salt water would accelerate the bleeding, and that, by the time he healed up, he would be too weak to resist. Listening to him squeal in pain and flop weakly around was worth it all. He then turned about to see if the others had left him anything.
Inside, all hell was breaking loose. Ren confronted one with a pistol, but the fight with Victor the year before had taught him much. He had just had a fresh fill of blood, and he was energized for the fight. He deftly dodged the bullets, and knocked away the pistol. He then quickly snatched his opponent’s hand and crushed it. In his pain, Ren had his nails extended, and started cutting his opponent up. Ren then found a broken piece of board, and thrust it through the chest of the renegade. Even though myth says that that should kill a vampire, all it does is paralyze him. This was his goal, as the vampire stiffened, he was then handed over to Jean-Claude, and he took the dip as well. However, Yuriya, not being experienced in combat, was having trouble with her attacker. She had all she could do to keep him off, and the fight went out onto the dock. He was about to thrust in a sword, when she raised her hand in panic. The vampire suddenly erupted into a full body burn, and he began to scream, and swing around like crazy. This was followed up by a swift kick from Jean-Claude, and the man landed in the water. The flame was doused, but the salt water did not help, and he began to flop in the water as if her were a fish on a dock. The tide caught him, and began to take him out to sea. Jean-Claude knew that the sharks of the Pacific would like a nice charbroiled meal, and let it go. Meanwhile, two of them ran out of a rear door, and ran right into the Sinclairs. They brought their eyes forward, pulled pistols, and said, “Prepare for death, kine!”
The Sinclairs did not even hesitate. Before they were able to level their pistols, the Sinclairs each had a sawed off pump action 20 gauge shotguns, “I’ll see that, and raise you!” said Victor as they opened fire. That stopped the vampires dead in their tracks. They then both pulled long Bowie knifes and plunged them in the hearts of their assailants, to paralyze them. They took Jean-Claude’s hint and dragged the bodies over to the dock, chaining them as the others had been chained. Meanwhile, Ivan was terrified. There were so many bats flying around he could not get his bearings. “Stop these bats, devil child!” he cried, but the bats parted way, and she was standing there. “Now you shall pay for striking me, you bastard child vampire!” she said. He was about to strike when she raised her hand, and he flew out the open door, harassed by a cloud of bats as he did. When he landed, he heard a sword clang next to him. It was his own sword—a katana. He looked up to see the sight of Jean-Claude in his battle clothes. “I should just take care of you, but I am willing to give you trial by combat, scum!” said Jean-Claude, “If I am the abomination, and you are so much of a god, then take me down, if you can.”
Rage filled Ivan, and he quickly rolled over and snatched up his sword. He was on top of Jean-Claude quickly, but Jean-Claude was quick to parry off the blow. Soon, the sounds of steel were heard over the dock, as the two clashed. With their enhanced abilities, they were moving faster than the human eye could follow. Ivan was good, but he was in a panicked state. This mule, his mule sow, and the two kine had far too quickly taken out his men, and now the mule was bent on vengeance. However, he knew that he was powerful, and he could succeed whereas the others had not. After dispatching him, taking out the others would be no problem. He would pull up his colleagues and let them feed to heal up. “You really don’t think you can win, do you mutt?” said Ivan.
With that, he did a three-strike maneuver that normally dropped most vampires that had ever challenged him. However this was no ordinary leech, and he had never faced anything like this. The only thing he was able to do was put a superficial cut on Jean-Claude’s face. After a short growl of pain, he redoubled himself, and said, “I don’t think, I do,” and just kept him at bay, waiting for him to get desperate. In fact, Jean-Claude had not even attempted an attacking blow, but contented himself on parrying the blows. He was conserving his energy, letting his opponent wear himself out. This had been the mistake of Ivan’s past opponents, and this was a lesson that Jean-Claude’s mentors taught him early on. Ivan finally over extended himself, and found a saber in his chest. Ivan stood paralyzed, without even the ability to speak. “Impressive,” said Jean-Claude, “Very few get through to blood me, but believe me when I say that it only hastens their doom. Now, you look overheated from your efforts. It’s time to cool you off.”
He did the same to him as he had to the others in order to weaken him, and watched him squirm, too paralyzed to pull out the saber. As they sat in the water, he said, “Find some cloth or canvas and lay it out. As I bring them up, wrap them neatly, and do not remove the blades. Victor, get your truck and we’ll head up towards my place. I have plans for them.”
Yuriya noticed that he was calmer now, and as they loaded the last vampire on the truck, he took a position in back with a shotgun just in case they moved. Yuriya decided to sit back there with him. She snuggled close to him and said, “How come I’m not like you. I have to be in a near death state before I can use any forceful powers.”
Jean-Claude then asked, “How much was your vampire parent around?”
She hung her head, and said, “Not often. He left it to mother, who could be up in the day with me, and only showed up a couple times a year. He had to hide his relationship.”
“My parents could not be apart,” he said, “So; I think that’s what led to things. Maybe your father had the right approach?”
“I don’t know,” she said, “because I never had the chance to enhance the vampire side of me. In fact, I had no idea what I was until it happened.”
“Why did they not tell you?”
“They knew there was an outside chance that I would be a normal human,” she answered, “and they wanted to wait before telling me.”
“What happened?” he asked.
“Father died before he could teach me anything, and there was little my mother could tell me. When I awoke as a d’amphile, I didn’t even know what was going on with me. I never knew what happened to that person, because I did not know how to erase his memory. Mother died soon after, and my uncle raised me. He tried to teach me, but there was not much that he could do. A lot I have learned on my own, and from you. Sadly, and I don’t know if you know this, but my uncle tried to use me to find Karin, because he was a part of a faction that started a small civil war here last year. It was a power play over who would control Karin’s blood. Whoever got it could have power.”
“I heard, but what we have now is worse. These renegades want power, just like the others, except they have delusions of grandeur. I guess my mentors knew that this might happen, so they sent me here to do something about it.”
“Sometimes I envy you.”
“Why is this?”
“You had people to teach you, and help you be fully what you are.”
“That, sadly, came at a cost.”
“Then both of us have lost to this crazy hate.”
“Just because we are different species of hominid does not mean that we cannot get along. This scum here doesn’t help much. However, maybe, with all of this, we can end it here in Japan, and let things spread. We could be the model for others. What is the fear? I just don’t get why people would rather fear than try to learn.”
“Fear is the easier path. Remember, we are talking about human nature.”
Jean-Claude had to concede the point, and knew that it might take centuries. However, if he managed to stay upright, there was a chance. If Karin’s blood could allow him or her offspring, there was a real chance. After a bit, she said, “What are you planning for these five here?”
“I told Anjou what I would do would be legendary, even in Hell. I don’t know if I have succeeded, but I know that they are yet in tremendous amounts of pain. They are in a bloodlust now, and they are not going to be satisfied. However, I am starving, and I hope that one of them has at least enough for me to renew myself. This always causes me to spend blood, and have to feed sooner than I need to. In the meantime, I think that they all need to enjoy a sunrise together.”
She looked in horror, knowing what they had already been through, and knew that they were not going to be allowed a merciful death. “Why don’t you send one back as a warning?”
“Believe me,” he said, “When they do not return, or even contact whoever is in charge, they’ll know, especially when bodies are not found.”
“What about that shack?”
“With no bodies left behind, and Anjou’s bats taking care of it, no one will ever be the wiser. They will restore the shack to what it had been, and clean up. No one but the renegades will know.”
They got to the hill, and Jean-Claude tapped on the window, telling Victor to stop. They stopped at the fog line, and said for everyone that was allowed up the hill to help drag the vampires to the rear of the house.
Ren helped to set up the poles and securely chain the vampires to them. Because they had lost so much blood, they were too weak to resist or heal up. All the while, Jean-Claude was singing Sunshine on my Shoulder. Once they were up, Ren said, “If you’ll excuse me, I am going to spend the day with one of my dolls. All this action has made me hungry.”
“I know how you feel,” said Jean-Claude.
“Besides,” said Ren, “I can’t watch this. It’s about an hour from sunrise, and I have to get in, but I am hungry as well. Do you have to do this? Even though they are renegades, I would never wish this on any vampire.”
“Ren, you know what they did to her,” said Jean-Claude, pointing to Anjou on the porch with the others, “I have to assure her that if this ever happens again, vengeance shall be swift.”
As he was saying this, Henry and Calera approached. Anjou had filled in everyone on what had happened. At first, they were angry that they had not been told. However, upon thinking about it, they had to admit that Jean-Claude had been correct in his assumptions, so they reluctantly had to let it go. However, Henry still felt the need to talk to Jean-Claude. As Ren walked away, Henry approached. “This is very severe, son,” he said, “I’m still a little cross that you acted alone.”
He looked at Henry very frankly, and said, “You know that I’ve always been a lone wolf. I do apologize, but I knew that we could handle things. If it had been big, I would have called you. I just did not want you to cave in over your daughter. I knew how to handle it without bargaining. I don’t bargain, by the way. It would be hard for you to act with your daughter in that situation, don’t you think?”
Henry had to admit to some of this, and then he said, “Still, son, Anjou was put in danger…”
“…put in danger by these scum,” he interrupted, “If they had left well enough alone, this conversation would not be happening. Besides, all this was done under your watch, and, they did it to get at Karin. Fortunately, they have not figured out that she is your daughter.”
The five on the poles looked down in horror, knowing that they had come close to victory, that the blood cow was not far away, and now knowing that there was nothing they could do about it. Henry chewed on this for a moment, and then Jean-Claude then said, “What would you have done to this bunch had you caught them?”
Henry gained some steel to his voice, and said, “Because it was my daughter, this is the least of what I would have done.”
“Oh, don’t worry, father,” said Jean-Claude, “I made them suffer from the first moment of contact until now. For one of them, it’s going to get a bit worse before it comes to the end.”
With that, Yuriya approached with a tumbler from the house. Meanwhile, Henry stepped in front of the group, and said, “You five have been acting in this city without my knowledge or approval, and you already know that brings severe consequences.”
As he was saying this, Jean-Claude was removing the blades in order for them to better hear and respond to Henry. He continued, “However, it’s bad enough you did this, worse that you kidnap one of your own and mean her harm, but what is the proverbial straw that broke the camel’s back was that it was my daughter! You, in a sense, have threatened my whole family! You deserve death!”
Ivan said, “Those two mules deserve it more!”
“What’s wrong?” said Jean-Claude, “What do you fear in humans?”
He laughed, and said, “You are a fool! You would mingle with your prey. Does the lion socialize with the sheep on which he feeds? Does the eagle have tea with the mockingbird he eats? We are superior! We should rule them!”
Henry was about to address this, but he saw the look on Jean-Claude’s face, and knew that he could give a more convincing answer. “We are superior?” he asked.
“No, we are superior; you are an abomination!” said Ivan.
“So, you’ve figured it out?” he asked.
“Your aura tells on you,” said Ivan.
“Be that as it may,” continued Jean-Claude, “Your thinking is no different than the sub-humans that thought themselves gods, and brought nothing but war and destruction on this earth. In fact, you’re worse. One thing I learned early on was that, before a man, or vampire, tried to conquer the earth, he should first learn to conquer himself. When he does that, he finds that conquest of the earth pales in comparison. When one has control of his faculties at that point, the desire to conquer leaves. The only thing he wishes to do at that point is to try to have people achieve the state of ubermensch that he has achieved, and better his fellow hominid—human or vampire. Considering the amount of power we wield, attempting to conquer ourselves should be the first thing we need to try, and teach our offspring. If enough did that, vampires would not have to hide in the shadows. You’re also worse, because your arrogant attitude, combined with the power you wield, makes you worse than the human dictator. If you thought Hitler was bad, what do you think would happen if the humans won all-out war against us? That is all your friends will bring on us if you keep up your actions. If that is the case, I am bound and determined to stop you. I shall not have that happen. Besides, we are badly outnumbered anyway, and we cannot win such a war, even if what you think Karin’s blood can do were true. You will not make the vampire superior, or rulers, you will cause the wholesale slaughter of the vampire. It’s because of your kind that we have to hide! It’s because of your kind that we cannot ever have peace! It is your kind that caused what would normally have been good vampires to cause what happened to me and my family!”
He then walked up to Victor, took the glass, hung it over his heel, slit his Achilles’ tendon, and filled the tumbler, having to milk some out, due to his already low blood. “I normally would have bit you, but I want you awake.”
He then pulled down his scarf, took off his hat, and drank. He felt the energy return to him with ecstasy on his face. Ivan said, “How can you drink the blood of vampires like that?”
“As you have so well pointed out,” said Jean-Claude, “I am a mutt; that means I swing both ways, and I must say, you are quite flavorful and spicy. Evil tends to flavor the blood well.”
At this point, they then recognized him from photographs from when he was younger, and was being hunted. “YOU!” thundered Ivan, and Jean-Claude said, “That’s right. This is the icing on the cake for me, because, even though it was the hatred of your kind that caused my family to die, it also created me as I am now. All your kind did was made it worse on yourself. It has only been the hand of God that has protected me, because He knew that He could take that, and turn it against your evil through the very one your evil sought to destroy. It’s just too bad you are learning this all too late. There is no way you could learn, and yet, I don’t think that you would anyway. You have proven yourselves the reprobates, and thus, the abominations. Thus, it is ironic that, when it came time to cash in the chips, this ‘mule,’ this ‘abomination,’ as you had called me, would be your banker.”
He then looked at the horizon, and saw the first indications of sunrise, saying, “Well, I’d like to enjoy the beauty of the sunrise with you, but, I’m tired, and I need to get some sleep. Therefore, if you’ll excuse me, I think I’ll retire. Say ‘hi’ to the Devil for me on your way to Hell.”
He continued to enjoy his glass as he and Henry went into the house. He did not even give them a second glance. He then went up to Anjou, and said, “Sorry it took so long, Corn Muffin. I told you what would to happen to anyone who would hurt you. I told you I would never let you down.”
“It’s alright, Big Brother,” she said as she hugged him, “I knew you would come.”
“Let’s go inside,” he said, “You don’t want to see this. To me, they’re as good as dead.”
She then smiled, and said, “They were as good as dead the second they touched me.”
Jean-Claude smiled, and said, “That’s the spirit,” and they went inside, as they began to hear the first moans from the condemned. Before they went in, they began to beg for mercy and forgiveness. Jean-Claude did not even look back, and he said, “Just like unrepentant sinners: it’s only when they realize that they can and will face the consequences of their evil are they ready to repent. How come they could not when they had the chance, before judgment hit?”
He shook his head, closed the door, and drew the curtains. He knew it would take a bit before death actually hit, but he was hoping they would turn to dust and blow away before Karin and Fumio woke up.
Upstairs, Jean-Claude slipped into his sleeping pants and tee shirt, was just getting into the bed, when he was shocked as Anjou slipped in wearing her nightgown. He coughed, a bit embarrassed, saying, “What are you doing?”
“Maki stayed the night,” she said, “It was too late for her to go home, and she was still a bit shook up from the run. I’m sorry, but I have no choice. Are the blinds closed tight?”
“Yes, Corn muffin,” he said, and they heard the screams of pain and misery very faintly as it became more light outside. “Just ignore it…” he started to say, but Anjou put her finger to her lips, and said, “Ponder not on what are just memories now, for who hears the moans of the dead? What can be done for them?”
It was a cold statement, but a true one, and he let it go. He started to recline, and she snuggled up to him. It was awkward, but he took it in stride, and just held her like a father cradling his daughter. Before he fell asleep, he said, “Did Yuriya go home?”
“I didn’t,” he heard a voice say, and he looked up to see her there. She then said, “I’m just too exhausted to go home. I’m glad I have the day off, because I do need to sleep. Move over.”
She then got on the bed, (which was a queen size bed, due to his size,) but not under the sheets, because she knew Jean-Claude was not ready for that. She was still not sure that she believed what he did, but she was willing to learn. For Jean-Claude, he appreciated her efforts to keep this from becoming something that would compromise his virtues, and hoped in her change, spiritually. He knew that she might just be the one that he would have to wed, because he knew that, at least at that point, there would be neither human nor vampire that would take him. Besides, if they did, he would have centuries to changer her mind. What punctuated the whole affair was, just before she drifted off, Anjou said, “Please, if something were to happen to mom and dad, that you two would take me in,” as if their marriage were a forgone conclusion. They both cuddled her, and they all fell into a blissful sleep, sleeping through the death throes of the vampire waste roasting in the morning sun.