After ten days of hot weather, Kali was shivering. She opened her eyes and looked at the ceiling. The only luminance in the abandoned cabin, the place she found refuge, was the sunlight which poured in through a small hole in the roof.
The pain was so severe that she couldn’t sit up. Breathing was all she could manage without feeling the need to vomit or pass out. Kali tried to stand, legs trembling, consuming her strength to keep upright. She slumped on the floor and leaned against the wall before sliding down to place her face on the floorboards, feeling sicker than ever.
She was lying on the ground, trying to piece together last night’s events, wondering why she’d let herself get into such a mess. If only she hadn’t been such a fucking idiot! Plan, pause and ponder. Her mind was hazy, making it hard to remember anything but that she played it too loose instead of following her rules.
“You’re stunning.” He leaned in for a kiss, lips like velvet against hers.
“Wait, what the fuck!” If she had any strength, she would have punched or jumped, most likely both.
He licked the blood from his hands as he stared at her, whispering, “It’s okay, you’re with me.”
She hadn’t noticed someone else in the hotel room with her.
Her mind raced. She couldn’t take her gaze off the stranger, watching as his eyes rolled back in ecstasy, the undulation of his throat as he swallowed. Her tongue slid over her lips, involuntarily mimicking his as they parted. She felt as if she could drown in him, the blood on his hands and face luring her into oblivion until she forgot about the pain and hunger.
With an uneasy smile, she said, “Ohhhh… no, no, no. I’m not so sure… I’ve got to think about this.”
His callous hands made their way across her arms, making Kali shudder. New sensations of pain ran through her body. His teeth scraped across her shoulder up her neck, biting the soft tissue.
She wiped her lips. “My life is cursed.”
He paused, moving her hair. “Think of it as a gift, not a curse.”
She turned over and nodded. “I don’t know how much longer I can keep this pace.”
Sharp pain in her back allowed him to feed again. The last time he sucked out her spinal fluid seemed to last forever. “And don’t take so long this time, you ugly fuck!”
This time Kali got what she wanted—his abilities. When she did, she’d snap the parasite’s neck. After all, it was an unnoticeable amount of fluid she had given up, and it meant one less shape-shifting wraith floating around town. At least it wasn’t one of those vacuous vampire fucks, but they’re next.
Within her was a nothingness that would go on forever. Kali grew more dangerous with each monster that lay dead in her wake, and things were about to get bloody—come All Hallow’s Eve.
J. Iner Souster is a painter of landscapes and portraiture, a sculptor who creates musical instruments out of reclaimed materials, metal dresses from handspun metal, and a collection of upcycled FauxBots. He’s also a photographer, musician, illustrator and mixed media artist. His writing has appeared in Spillwords, Friday Flash Fiction, A Story in 100 Words, 100 Word Project, The Drabble, and 101 Word Stories.
Artwork by Iner Souster
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