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Caught in a Merry Chase

by Rachel Parsons

“It’s going to hit that embankment,” I yelled when I saw the brake lights flash on the little red Corvette that we were chasing. “Damn it. You’d think he’d know about the conservation of momentum.”

Momentum had to go somewhere, and the driver of the Corvette tried to salvage something from his taking the curve too fast. He succeeded only in sending his vehicle down the embankment.

“Hang on to your hat,” I yelled, as I swerved, downshifted, and tried to obey the laws of physics.

Henry, who was dressed like a latter-day Bat Masterson, in his top hat, swanky suit, and cravat, pulled off his derby. Grabbed his seltzer bottle.

“You look ridiculous,” I said.

“You should talk, Miss Tinker Bell.” I had to admit the justice of his remark. I was dressed in a fairy outfit, with a faux diamond buckle on each of my slippers.

“You didn’t give me much time to change.” I had just been called to substitute for Tinker Bell in a play my daughter was going to be in. No Tinker Bell; no play. And the other moms all had excuses. So, yes, agent Sunny Gunn, of the State Police, was going after her perp dressed for a ball in Neverland.

“It could have been worse. You could have been naked,” said Henry Porter, a muscular stereotype of an FBI agent.

“It could have been worse; I could have been in a swan outfit.” I climbed out and felt my ruby slippers ooze into the mud. I pulled my gun, and he was holding his seltzer bottle full of holy water as we slid down the foliage-covered mountain to where the burning Corvette lay.

“You look nervous. Here, I find these help.” He handed me a Nutella.

I crunched on the cookie as if biting into steel. I crouched by the burning Corvette. “Holy crap!”

I threw myself on top of Henry, and we fell into a ditch just as the car exploded.

“Well, that’s the end of him. I didn’t see him get out, did you?” I stood up, dusting the dirt off my green, strapless mini-dress.

“Fire doesn’t kill them,” Henry said.

“You seriously think he’s a vampire, don’t you?”

“My grandfather did. Whole generations of Van Helsings have hunted him. I won’t believe he’s dead until I see the bleached bones on the side of the road with a stake through the heart.”

“An FBI vampire hunter. And I thought The X-Files were goofy.”

“You have to admit, all the deaths fit the description of a vampire killing.”

“Or a serial killer who likes to drain blood. OK, fine, let’s see if we can spot any remnant of our bloodsucker in the wreckage. Although I’d think he’d just turn into a bat and escape us that way.”

I shouldn’t have said that. For the next thing I knew an enormous creature with a 57=inch wing span grabbed me by the talons and took me into the air, screaming.

You know, you can feel helpless, even with a .44 Magnum Ruger Alaskan in your hands. I mean, what could I do, shoot the bat? At best, that would mean I would plunge to certain death. At best, Henry van Helsing would be proven right, and I’d be in the grip of a supernatural being who couldn’t be killed. At least by bullets.

I tried blowing on my captor, as I had had garlic for dinner. Enough that men who kissed me fainted. But I was too far away from the creature’s head for it to do any good.

We landed at an abandoned windmill. The bird dropped me on my butt in the center of the mill. It was all gothic in side, with a harpsichord in the corner, Victorian-era furnishings, and a picture of Donald Trump on the wall facing the door. He was giving his famous thumbs-up.

The bat lifted its wings, which turned into arms. Soon a mirror image of Henry in vestments looked down on me.

“I feel underdressed,” I said, pulling my skirts down. Tinker Bell, though, has no genitals, and my skirt was way too short for modesty. I had thought of wearing panties but, to my shame, I had grabbed the edible ones from the wrong drawer in my haste.

My host started toward me. I pointed the revolver.

“Bullets can’t hurt me,” he intoned in an accent that sounded like someone had blended Bela Lugosi and Arnold Schwarzenegger on the one day that they both had laryngitis.

“They’re silver bullets,” I said, lying.

“That only works for werewolves.”

“Rats. You called my bluff.”

“Welcome to my humble abode.”

“Don’t you live in castles?”

“I’m having one brought here, brick by brick. But the tariffs are staggering.”

“Well, blame it on your pal up there,” I said, jutting a thumb to the picture of the Donald.

He smiled. Cocked an ear. “Ah, children of the night. What music they make.”

“Those are cicadas, doofus. So why am I here?”

“Why are any of us here? Life is so meaningless. Why death? To be truly dead would be glorious.”

“You obviously never met my ex-husbands.”

“I wasn’t talking about the bedroom.”

“Neither was I.” I managed to get up, holster the Ruger. Crossed my arms.

“Take off that ridiculous costume,” he ordered.

“No way. I’m not standing naked in front of you.”

He made a whisking gesture, and up over my head went my mini-dress. My panties fell to the ground, and my bra whirled away.

“Oh, I was wrong. Guess I will be standing naked in front of you. Can I at least wear my shoulder holster?”

“As you wish.”

I stepped out of my panties, put my shoulder holster on.

“I offer you eternal life,” he said.

“The Department gives me a great deal on life insurance, thank you very much.”

“You won’t need life insurance. Nor clothes.”

“Is that how you got to your other victims? Promising them eternal life?”

“I promised them nothing. They meant nothing to me. Were just a way to satisfy my body’s need. You, on the other hand, are glorious.”

“I have a daughter,” I said.

“She will have the finest education. Go to Harvard, Yale, Eton.”

“I thought only boys were allowed into Eton.”

“St. Trinian’s, then.”

I shivered. “You know it’s goddamn cold in here. At least build a fire, if you’re going to keep me naked.”

Another hand gesture, and a roaring fire appeared in the fireplace. Its flames licked at the picture of Donald Trump.

“You see how well I provide? You will never die, you will be warm, and all you have to do is suck me.”

“Excuse me?”

“One becomes an immortal by sucking the blood of another immortal.”

“And if I don’t suck you?”

The fire went out; the barn-like doors closed.

“It won’t be pleasant for you.”

He had just pissed me off. I assumed a weaver stance, shot six times. a nice grouping around his heart. Predictably, no effect. Except blood trickling down.

“Now, will you suck me?”

“OK, fine. Just get that fire back on.”

I licked his wounds, and felt the transformation almost immediately. I felt stronger, more powerful, a lot less cold.

Henry kicked in the door and aimed a crossbow. Where did he get a crossbow? No wonder he was late; it must have been buried in the trunk under the MP 5/10 submachine gun, the M4 Carbine, the Remington 870 12-gauge, the sniper rifle and all those spare Glocks my father had insisted I take. “No one uses a .44 Magnum anymore,” he chided.

Henry deftly shot the count through the heart; another arrow automatically notched. He fired again at me.

My bones snapped, realigned; I felt ten extra teeth crowd my mouth. My hands and feet turned into paws. My pelt was thick, and a damn good thing too.

I leapt on Henry, started licking his nose.

“Oh, thank God, when I saw you sucking him, I thought... But I shot you through the heart.” Bafflement crossed his face like a schooner on Lake Superior during a bad wind.

I yipped in Morse code, “Don’t be silly. That only works for vampires.”

Copyright © 2017 by Rachel Parsons

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