Thursday, February 2, 2012
Norman Oklahoma and the Girl Who Cried Vampire - 09
My eyes opened to darkness. For a moment I thought I might be blind, but as my eyes adjusted I could make out a faint line of light near the ground in the distance. The light from under a door, possibly.
I was in a seated position. I tried to move and found that I was bound to a chair. My wrists to the arms of the chair, my ankles to the legs.
I could hear the faint thump of a bass beat above me. I guessed I was in the Barn, in some sort of basement, or sub basement. My eyes continued to adjust to the darkness and I could make out shapes around me by the sliver of light that shone through the razor thin space between the bottom of the door and the floor. I could make out shelves, counter tops, and little else.
Based on what little I could make out, I figured that I was in the center of the room. Everything around me would have been out of reach even if my arms were free.
I had been imprisoned by vampires in the depths of the Earth, and yet still managed a smile. I smiled because though I wasn’t able to see much around me, I could still smell, and I’ve come accustomed to the fine, metallic scent of my Peacemakers over the years. The oil, the gun powder, my own sweat that has seeped slowly into the wooden grips over the years.
They left me alone in a room with my guns.
Simpletons. Pure, one hundred percent, state of the art idiocy. Sure, I was strapped to a chair, but the chair was made of wood. It didn’t really matter how strong my bonds were, the chair would break easily enough it I could get it to tip backwards.
I began slowly. Rocking forwards and backwards, gaining momentum. Soon the chair started to rock. I put a little English on it, that’s good old American English, not that fancy crap they speak overseas, and the chair began to get a little air as it tipped forwards and backwards. The trick was to fall backwards, not forwards. Falling on my face wasn’t gonna do nothing but dent the floor.
I continued to rock, back and forth, back and forth, until finally, the chair reached its tipping point and I crashed backwards onto the floor. Only, the chair didn’t break. So now I just lay on the floor, on my back, strapped to a chair, with nowhere to go, and frankly feeling a bit embarrassed about the entire affair.
Suddenly light flooded the room. Someone must have opened the door. I couldn’t see who it was due to the way I had fallen. My feet were pointed at the door, and my head at the back wall. I heard footsteps. There were enough of them that four, maybe five guys had just walked into the room. One of them was chuckling.
All of the footsteps stopped but one, one of the fellas was circling the chair, the guy who was laughing. He was staying out of my line of site. Then his head appeared, upside down. He was standing at my shoulders looking down on me. Looking down and laughing. It was Bertram Brone.
“Oh Norman,” he said, wiping a tear from his eye. “You certainly are adorable. Trying to break free, are we?”
“Damn right I am,” I replied as I continued to struggle against my bonds. “And once I do, I plan of putting a bullet into one of your knees. You know, for old time’s sake.”
Bertram laughed, reached down, and with one hand, lifted me from the ground and set me down, back in the position I had started out in. Brone was standing behind me now, his hands on my shoulders. There were four other people in the room. The four little leather men. One of them, the one I shot in the knee, leaned on a pair of wooden crutches.
The little limping leather man hobbled up and stood in front of me. With me in the chair, he was able to look me right in the eyes. He looked pretty pissed.
“God bless us, everyone,” I said, laughing.
The little limping leather man swung one of the crutches at the side of my head like he was Babe Ruth swinging for the wall. I tried to duck, but being all bound up as I was, I didn’t quite make it. The crutch connected with my skull and snapped in two.
Brone must have stepped out of the way, because suddenly I was falling back onto the floor again. The chair still wouldn’t break.
Brone laughed and once again lifted me from the ground and set me right.
“Norman, Norman, Norman,” Brone said as he circled around to stand in front of me. “I told you that you shouldn’t have shot young Cort, here.”
Bertram Brone was dressed to the nines in a custom tailored suit that if sold, could probably garner enough scratch to feed the entire population of a good sized third world country. Brone wasn’t interested in charity however.
“I’m here for the girl, Brone,” I said. “Be a good boy and fetch her for me. If you can do that I promise I’ll walk out without touching you, anyone who works for you, or your property.”
Brone just smiled.
“If you don’t,” I continued. “I’m gonna to have to shoot you, shoot your four little kids here, shoot anyone else who stands between me and that little girl, and then burn the place to the ground on my way out.”
I paused a moment, letting that sink in, looking at each of them in turn before directing my gaze back to Brone.
“What do you say, Bert? You gonna be a team player here?”
“What do I say?” Brone replied, laughing. “Why, I say that I am the one in control here Norman. You aren’t in any position to make demands. So you just make yourself comfortable, you’re going to be here a while.” Brone laughed even harder. Soon his four little leather men were laughing right along with him. “What do you say to that?”
“Moo,” I replied, and felt a little feeling of comfort rush into me as Bert’s face changed from one of amusement to one of pure murderous rage.
See, I really knew how to push ole Bert’s buttons. It’s only the most desperate of vampires who feed on animals. They’d rather go for the synthetic stuff that the government’s cooked up for them then debase themselves by drinking animal blood. Bert would pull down Heaven and raze the very Earth itself if he thought it would stop his colleagues from learning that he was once desperate enough to taste cow blood. He hated himself for what he once was, and I try to remind him of the old days any chance I get.
“Why you persist in putting yourself into these types of situations is really beyond me, Norman,” Brone was saying as he pulled of his jacket and handed it to one of his little men.
I only got out a few chuckles before Bert started wailing on me. Delivering solid punches to my face and body, one fist after the other, over and over. With his vampire strength and speed, it was like taking a jack hammer to my person. He landed dozens hits in just moments. It sounded like someone hitting a side of beef with a sledgehammer, but sped up to a factor of ten, or even fifty.
Blood flew, my nose flattened, teeth broke, and ribs cracked, but I didn’t scream. I stood tall. Well, as tall as I could while strapped to a chair.
It was over in four seconds and Brone was slipping back into his jacket.
“You finished?” I asked, spitting out blood and teeth. More blood ran into my eyes and I tried to blink it away. However, through the pain that sang through my body like the wail of a tornado siren, I could feel the itching that meant that the healing had begun.
“No, Norman. I am by no mean finished.” Brone walked around behind me on my right, returning on my left with a chair in his hands. He placed the chair so that it was facing me, and sat before he continued speaking. “See, I know about you, Norman. I know how fast you can heal. I know that in less than six hours everything I’ve just done to you will be fixed. And here’s the thing, Norman,” he leaned in close and whispered. “I’m going to leave you here to heal. Then, six hours from now, I’ll be back, and then we are going to start all over again.”
“Sounds fun,” I said.
“Oh, it will be. For me. See, I can do this for a great long time, Norman Oklahoma. You and me have a standing appoint of pain, every six hours, for as long as it continues to entertain me.”
Brone stood, brushed off the front of his jacket, smoothed out the imaginary wrinkles, and motioned for his little men to leave the room. He followed closely behind.
“What happens when the fun stops?” I asked as he reached the door.
He paused in the doorway and spoke without turning around, “Norman, the very moment I no longer find you entertaining is the very moment that your life in this world will end.” He turned to face me, a smile on his face. “Try to get some sleep, okay. I’ll see you in six hours.”
With that, he left, closing the door and leaving me in darkness. Alone with my guns.
To be continued ...