PLEASE NOTE: This is a ROUGH DRAFT. It is the VERY FIRST DRAFT OF THE STORY. YOU are the very first person to read it – I haven’t even read it in its entirety yet!
You WILL come across numerous issues including:
- spelling mistakes;
- grammar issues;
- weak sentence structure;
- repeated words;
- unnecessary words;
- missing words;
- lack of details/descriptions;
- confusing details/descriptions;
Critiques/criticisms, while appreciated, most likely will be discarded at this stage! Thank you.
Additional Note: Doodles, Sketches, and Artwork may be added over time. These are not the story illustrations! They do feature characters and places within the story, however.
About a quarter of Vainstrel’s body hung over the side of his bed. His fingers fiddled with his phone while looking at it upside down. His lips were exaggeratedly puffed out and his brows wrinkled his head so deeply. He let out a large, noisy sigh that seemed to echo off the walls of his bed chamber.
He let his hands and arms hang loosely, his freehand resting upon his forehead. “Oh is the woe of the vampire who has desire for his one and only mistress!”
He then grasped his shirt with his freehand, still allowing the one with his mobile phone to hang loosely and touch the ground. He leaned his head back into the matress. He raised his voice even more than he had before. “How cruel is she to be, not answer my request for her call or letter! Not a single sound from that single day.”
He clenched both of his fist, tightly grasping both his shirt and the phone at the same time. “Was that moment just a mistake?” He dramatically looked to his left and closed his eyes. “Is fate truly the cruel mistress she seems to be?”
Vainstrel didn’t move.
“What is your problem?!”
Vainstrel didn’t even need to look up, knowing his bedroom door had been slammed into his bed chamber walls once more. The raging storm has appeared once more, threatening to put another hole in the walls of my sanctuary.
“If you’re going to practice your lines, keep your door close, you cheap background standee!”
Vainstrel suddenly found the crown of his head on the floor. With it, his whole body fell.
“Ria, dear…we really should be ––”
“Vladmir, SHUT IT.”
Vainstrel stood up, dusting himself off. He slipped his phone into his pants pocket, just before adjusting the cape to his back. “My dear sister and my dear brother-in-law, what a pleasure.”
Ria held up a fist, shaking it at him. “You aren’t fooling anyone with your bad acting or your poorly written script.”
“Script?” echoed Vainstrel. “I am aware I have a show coming up that I have a significant role with soon, but today is a rest day.”
“Vainstrel,” said Vladmir. “We have noticed you have been down lately. Whatever could be wrong?”
Vainstrel whipped out his phone once more, holding it up in the air as if looking into a compact mirror. “My dear, sweet brother-in-law!” He pouted, scrolling on his phone. “A mistress whose blood is so electrifying has captured my cold heart. One could swear it was fate…” He brought his phone-holding hand to his forehead and tossed his head backwards. He put out his right leg as he did so, slightly turning his heel. His free arm extended over and out to the side as a single tear came raining down from his eye that wasn’t hidden by his long bangs. “And yet no words have been spoken since!” He then squatted down and hugged his legs. “…why does the mistress of lighting have to be so cruel…no words…spoken or written…since then…”
Ria’s face scrunched. “How gross! Why do you sound like you are in love?”
Vainstrel suddenly popped up and over to his older sister, leaning into her face, wide-eyed, his barring his fang teeth. “Because, my dear older sister, I have done just that.”
Ria’s face scrunched up even more and she stuck out her tongue. “BLEGH! YAK! YUCK!”
As Ria was making noises of disgust, Vladmir gentle folded his hands and smiled at Vainstrel. “How awe-inspiring! Who is this ‘mistress’ that has caught your eye?” His smile stretched even further. “A fellow actress, perhaps?”
Vainstrel touched his cheeks, blushing like an innocent maiden. “Not an actress, but a lightning queen.”
Vainstrel held up his index finger, pouting for a moment. “Not an actual queen.” He then placed his hand over his heart. “Just the one in my heart.”
Vainstrel looked up at the small stained glass dome in his room where bits of light helped to color his room with distinctly colored spots. “My lightning queen is no other than a witch who sent electricty through me like no other.”
Ria gagged. She leaned over, placing one hand on her knee and the other in the air, waving it side to side. “I do not need to hear about my little brother’s new-found sexual expression! I’m out, I’m out.”
Vainstrel scoffed. “ME? Sexual expression? I have not yet hit that point with my mistress – I simply want to taste her blood once more on my tongue and feel the electricity pulse through my body once more.”
Ria’s face turned a greenish-yellow.
Vladmir rubbed Ria’s back, but kept his smile directed towards Vainstrel. “What does ‘electricty’ refer to?”
Vainstrel drew back his head and blinked a few times. “It refers to true electricty, like lightning on a stormy day. The mistress I desire is none other than an elemental witch, specializing in lightning magic, if I am no mistaken. It coarses through her body to the point it truly gave me the greatest jolt of my life when I sunk my teeth into her soft flesh and got the first taste of her blood pulsing with frantic electricity that was so strong, it knocked me out cold.”
Vladmir’s eyes popped. “Oh my.”
Vainstrel held his clenched phone up into the air. “And now I am robbed of such an opportunity to speak with her once more!”
“What are they ways you have tried to contact her?”
“Through my own voice on my phone and through the letters sent through the air.”
Vladmir looked at Vainstrel questionably. Ria waved her hand up and down. “The cheap background standee is just saying he called and texted her.”
Vladmir chuckled. “I see.”
Vainstrel covered his eyes with his arms, crying. “But nothing! Nothing at all!”
Vladmir placed a hand on his chin. “Perhaps you could try writing her a physical letter?”
Vainstrel stared at Vladmir, utterly horrified at the meer suggestion of such an old fashion way of sending letters! This wasn’t a holiday, you know!
Vladmir laughed. “I suppose not. What about her physical address?”
Vainstrel hung his head. “I was far too enthralled with my lightning queen to ask for something more than a phone number.” He then threw it back. “So deep is my sorrow for such an unfortunate oversight! HOW CRUEL FATE IS, PLACING PERFECTION IN FRONT OF I, YET TAKING IT AWAY ALL THE SAME!”
Vladmir and Ria stared at Vainstrel, beads of sweatdropping down their faces. Vainstrel didn’t pay any attention to them – instead, he stood in a freeze-frame dramatic pose with his arms out stretched towards the sky, his head back, and his legs spread front and back, looking as if he was about to kneel. You could almost see lightning dancing behind him.
“So, this is what you were doing?” asked Ria.
“Yes,” replied Vainstrel, super flatly. He stood straight, looking at them both.
She glared at Vainstrel and pointed at him. “Shut the damn door next time!”
Ria grabbed onto Vladmir’s wrist, yanking him out of the room, slaming the door behind her.
Vainstrel watched as the door knob from his end fell off and rolled on the floor in a circle.
Vainstrel fell to the floor, groaned, and looked at his phone once more. With his thumb, he slid his finger over the keyboard and wrote “I want to see you once more” and hit “send”.
Then he sighed.
Vainstrel dragged his feet. If it had been a rainy day, his normally prestine shoes would be covered in mud. Luckily for him though, it hadn’t rained. Instead, he flatted and kicked up the grass under his feet. He, at some point, gotten off the cobblestone path while continuing to pout at his phone.
“If only my lightning mistress would allow me to see her once more…” He brought his phone to his chest. “But alas, it shall not be. My only hope is that the freshly brewed coffee from beans so fresh will soothe my aching, cold heart.”
He lifted his hands up in the air as if praying to the Gods, making his way back onto the pathway. He continued to keep his hands raised as he turned a corner and down a street lined with numerous buildings of various shapes in sizes, but all uniform in color scheme.
Vainstrel ignored the sound of buzzing electricty coming from near him, just past a park bench and a lamp that clearly had just been illuminated based on the sheer brightness of it. He continued to walk past the park and managed to get to the building next to it, just before stopping in his tracks.
Hands still up in the air, he pivoted on one foot and turned his head at the hay-colored, curly/wavy side ponytail accented with a small witches hat clipped to the other side. He stared for a moment, his eyes lowering to the phone in her hands being zapped repeatedly with electricity.
Vainstrel gasped, tears forming in his eyes. He leaped into the park over its fences and slid right in front of her.
Just as she finished zapping her phone once more, Vainstrel grasped her hand. “My dear lightning queen, Spark!”
He watched Spark visibly jump. Immeditately, his hand was zapped. Vainstrel winced. Spark gasped. “Vainstrel! I’m so sorry.”
Vainstrel smiled, flashing her his fang teeth. “It is alright, my dear Spark. Seeing your light and feeling your zap is truly the highlight of my long life.”
Spark giggled. Vainstrel watched her cheeks slightly flush.
“I have been attempting to contact you by voice and electronic letter, yet I heard no word,” said Vainstrel. “I was worried you were not willing to see me once more.”
“Oh!” Spark lifted up her phone, pointing to it. “I thought someone was trying to contact me!” She tapped her phone to her cheek, prompting the screen to turn out. Vainstrel could see that about half the screen was out and about a third of it had insane amounts of discoloration. If Vainstrel could go any paler with his skin, he would…instead, he just kind of turned blue, seeing the sight.
Vainstrel grabbed her hand holding the phone, drawing it closer to him, staring at all the cracks and scratches upon its surface. “My! What happened to your phone?”
Spark, as if she was teasing, poked the side of her own cheek with her free hand, giving him a warm smile. “I dropped it into water the day we met.”
Vainstrel hung his head, his forehead tapping the phone.
“Oh! It’s not all that bad. A lot of features still work. Not all the time, but like…sometimes in the middle of sleep or something!” Spark waved her hand in front of herself, as if attempting to shoo away the bad. “Sometimes it wakes me up, but it’s not all that bad.”
“How cruel it is to see you with a device that no longer does its job well enough,” replied Vainstrel.
Spark jumped up. Vainstrel, who had still been resting his forehead on her phone, backed up, giving just enough room for Spark to lean in his face. She lifted up her phone, showing it being surrounded with electricty once more. “Well, that’s where I got the most brilliant idea! I could just use my electricty to fix it!”
Spark then took a step back and looked down at her phone. As a result from her electricty, the discoloration on the screen changed…but nothing else. She frowned. “But it still doesn’t look like it’s going to work properly…
Vainstrel took a look at her phone once more. He raised an eyebrow and asked: “why not treat yourself to a new phone that will work for you?”
Spark gapped at Vainstrel.
Vainstrel stared back at Spark, a bit surprised by her reaction.
“Whoa! I hadn’t thought of that!”
Vainstrel turned around and wiped a single tear away from his eye while smiling. My lightning queen, mistress of my heart…who would not think of that.
“Where would I even purchase a new one? I received this one from my mom…oh my goodness. I still haven’t told her that I broke it.”
Vainstrel’s face lit up. He whipped back around and grasped her hands. “Spark, my love, I know a place most well suited for such a venture.” He raised a hand to the air, as if politely showing Spark something in the sky. He looked up in the dirction of his hand. “COME! Let me show you the way to the castle of celluar phones – with the best prices and selections as varied as gemstone.”
He heard Spark giggle. Then he felt the warmth of her body draw closer. His arm that had been holding Spark’s hand was now fully covered in the warmth of Spark. Vainstrel’s cheeks flushed, looking over to see Spark smiling up at him.
“Any place you call a ‘castle’ must be amazing”
Vainstrel rested his hand that had been up in the air over Spark’s, leading her out from the small park. “I would only recommend the best for you.”
Spark’s smile seem to twist a slight bit more and her eyes half lowered. “What other ‘castles’ do you know of?”
Vainstrel returned the seemingly flirty smile back. “I will be more than happy to guide you there too, my dear.”
The streets widened just a bit and the cobblestones changed to a notably darker color and slightly harsher shapes that helped to compliment the off-white buildings with pointed structures that raised up into the clouds. Vainstrel glanced over at Spark, whose face was lit up. A warmth he didn’t normally feel overtook his heart. He could see the pointed structures around them reflected in Spark’s eyes. For some reason, seeing them in her brown eyes made them just that more beautiful.
“My dear Lady Spark, have you ever entered into this haven before today?”
Spark continued to look around. “No, I don’t believe I have!”
Vainstrel stopped walking for a moment. He took Spark’s hands into his, gently bringing his lips to her right hand. “It is my uptmost desire to have you accompany me for coffee after we make our way to the castle of cellular devices.”
Spark giggled. Her smile shifted from the scenery to Vainstrel’s face. “I’d love to!”
Vainstrel gave her a gentle kiss on her hand. Just as his lips rested for a brief moment upon her skin, he felt slight zaps of electricity. He lifted his head back up and stood back, seeing Spark slightly flushed.
“Uuuuh, um…” Spark started to poke her cheek as she had done earlier. “I don’t drink coffee though. Do they have hot chocolate with chili peppers?”
Vainstrel brought Spark’s hand to his chest. “Dazzling Spark, you are in luck – they have the finest, widest selection of hot chocolates within their coffee haven.”
Vainstrel and Spark gazed into each other’s eyes.
Spark’s smile widened and her shoulders lifted as she slightly shifted her body. Her hair bobbed a bit as she tilted her head. “Okay! Sounds yummy.”
Vainstrel immeditately turned away from her and crotched, holding his head. Oh my dear goddess, this woman of lightning mastery is adorable. How forutune smiles upon me today! He clenched his fist. A river of tears dripped down his face.
Vainstrel immediately stood back up, grabbing Spark’s hand once more. HIs tears instantly dried up and a smile grew within milliseconds upon his face. He lifted his free hand up into the air. “COME! It is just up ahead!”
“The castle housing cellular devices.”
It was a meer two minutes when they arrived in front of the “castle of cellular devices” in which Vainstrel was talking about.
The building itself wasn’t much different from the others around it: cream-colored white with accents in a dark grayish-blue color that perfectly complemented the rest of the walls. The “castle” only had two features that made it stand-out: extra ornate designs over windows that stood as tall as the building itself in the same cream-color as the rest of the structure and a sign that read “Count Cellular’s Electronic Castle” in a cursive font that was barely legible. The extra accents were illuminated by a back lighting, reminding one greatly of a lit screen in the dark.
Vainstrel looked over to Spark. Reflected in her eyes was not only the light from the ornamentation, but also the inner walls of the store that could be soon through the windows. There seemed to be a twinkle in her eye that made everything so much brighter. Vainstrel couldn’t help but blush at her unabashed joy.
Spark gasped. “How beautiful!” Her smile seemed to freeze. Vainstrel lifted an eyebrow.
“what is wrong, my dear?”
Spark looked at him. “I thought you were using ‘castle’ to mean a building. I didn’t expect it to have ‘castle’ in the name!”
Vainstrel couldn’t help but smile. “Spark, you are correct. I had been using it to mean building.”
Spark suddenly sighed, grasping her chest. Vainstrel reflexively put a hand on her back. “What’s wrong?”
“okay, PHEW! I thought you’d get mad if I said this place doesn’t look much like a castle!”
Vainstrel stared at her blankly for a brief moment, then laughed. “Oh my dear! How could I be mad by such a statement that is true!”
Vainstrel leaned into her face with a larger smile. “Although for this particular castle, the looks outside deceive the mind.”
Spark cocked her head.
“Would you like me to show you?”
Spark wrapped her arm around Vainstrel. Her smile seemed seductive. “Tee hee, sure!”
Vainstrel opened the door to the cellular castle and lead Spark inside. He couldn’t help but smile at everything.
The walls towered with electronic devices, each one neatly placed like the bricks of a castle. There was a low amount of light, but the amount there was was cozy-like, contrasting with the rather foreboding towers all around. Deep inside at the other end was a lit fireplace, numerous couches, and a large tea table – something that resembled a king’s den.
“Vainstrel! What a pleasure and rarity it is to see you!”
Vainstrel and Spark both turned into the direction of the voice. Appearing out from the shadows was a tall, elegantly thin man with gorgeous long locks of hair framing his face. His ponytail of hair seemed to curl around his body. His pointed-teeth smile would have been full of otherworldly charm had Vainstrel and Spark hadn’t been otherworldly themselves.
“Dermot!” Vainstrel extended a hand to the man. “A pleasant surprise to see you once more!”
Dermot approached closer. “And who might this be?”
Before Vainstrel had a chance say who was holding onto his arm, she introduced herself. Spark kicked up her leg behind her and lifted her hand, greeting Dermot with both her electrifying smile and a flash of electricity in her hand greeting him.
“Hey! I’m Spark Alamental!”
“Ooooh,” said Dermot. “An Alamental? I’m an acquaintance of one of your brothers. It is a pleasure to meet you.”
Dermot reached out his hand to Spark, shaking it.
“Welcome to Count Cellular’s Electronic Castle. We specialize in cellular electronic devices, but we have much more than that available. I am Dermot and I am more than happy to be at your service today.”
Dermot leaned in to give Spark a kiss on her hand, prompting Vainstrel to glare. Dermot wrinkled his brow and paused, switching to a simple bow of the head. His hair briefly brushed against Spark’s hand. Vainstrel, whose body had tensed up, relaxed.
Dermot returned a glance, standing back up straight. He clasped his hands and gave them a salesman’s smile. “What has brought you in today?”
Spark reached into her skirt pocket and pulled out her broken phone. “To get a new phone.”
While Dermot maintained his smile, beads of sweat started to roll down his face at the site of the badly damaged device. “I would be more than happy to help you find a phone today. Was there anything in particular that you were looking at?”
Spark tapped her bottom lip. She soon smiled. “Something waterproof and can be easily charged with my electricity.”
“Is your element electricity?”
“Yes! How’d you know?”
“Everything about you reveals your true nature, Lady Spark.”
Vainstrel leered at Dermot. Dermot, noticing his friend’s glare, backed up a bit from Spark. He shot Vainstrel a rather puzzled look before turning back to Spark with his usual salesman smile. “Come right this way – I believe I have the best selection of phones for you.”
Spark squealed. She let go of Vainstrel’s arm and began jumping up and down, clapping her hands with pure delight. Vainstrel felt his cold heart thump more than usual, watching the young woman live up to her name in more than one way.
Vainstrel and Spark followed Dermot into a room that was just as lavishly decorated as the others, continuing to give the feeling of a castle built with electronics. Dermot extended his hand towards a section on the wall in which everything displayed was back-lit by an almost white blue colored light, resembling the light of the stars dotting the sky.
“These phones were made and designed for witches by witches. Every one of them works with magic of any kind. They are also water and fire proof. I am sure there will be one that will suit your fancy.”
“Ooooooo!!” Spark jumped up to the wall, looking over everything. “There’s SOOOO many!”
Dermot laughed. “Indeed. Do you have any other specific requirements for your phone?”
Spark stopped for a moment. Vainstrel couldn’t help but think the little scrunch of her lips to the side was adorable.
“Nah, I don’t think so! I think I just need to decide what one.”
“Very well. I shall leave you too it. If you have any questions, feel free to ask. I shall be standing just outside the entrance.”
Vainstrel watched Dermot lightly tug his sleeve as he walked passed him. Vainstrel nodded, fully understanding the gesture. He walked over to Spark, grabbing her chin.
“Whoa! Vainstrel – you startled me!”
“Sorry, my lady Spark. I need to speak with Dermot for but a single moment. Will you execuse me?”
Spark’s brown eyes twinkled. She lightly brushed his hand and smiled. “Okay, that’s fine. I’ll be here waiting – but please come back.” Spark pouted. “I’ll get lonely without you.”
Vainstrel’s lips quivered. My, what is this magnetizing feeling in the depths of my body by a single look of her lowered eyes and lips so pursued.
Vainstrel nodded serveral times. “Yes, yes, my dear Spark, I shall be right back.”
Vainstrel slipped out and away, turning to Dermot.
Dermot folded his arms, looking down on Vainstrel. His face was dark and his gaze sharp. “Tell me – what were you doing, glaring at me?”
“You attempted to kiss the hand of the lightning queen!”
“…I do that to every customer.”
“But you didn’t do that to me!”
Dermot thrusted his hand in Vainstrel’s direction. “I know you!”
Vainstrel pointed at Dermot. “Do not dare touch the queen of lightning!” He grabbed his cape and dramatically pulled it partially over his face. “For she is mine.”
Dermot sighed, covering his face with one of his hands. “What did you do?”
Dermot was surprised. He stumbled backwards. “Nothing yet? You made it seem like there was something going on.”
“Well, of course there is.”
“…did you hang out with Tarhean vampires again?”
“They’re the only ones who ever get jealous over any relationship their significant other or people they like have.”
Vainstrel put down his cape and sighed. He placed his hand over his heart. “As I walked home, so weary, I happened upon her that day. So innocent and open. I bit in her smooth neck, sinking my teeth deep inside. Within that single moment, I was struck by lightning! I woke up to her beautiful smile, mocking me for my lack of consideration that, perhaps, she would have some defense. For the first time in my life, I felt alive.”
Vainstrel then folded his hands together, as if in a prayer. He looked up towards the sky, tears in his eyes. “I feel for the lightning queen in an instant! I want nothing more than to form a blood contract with her, so that she will be mine and I be her’s.”
Dermot frowned. His eyes closed in annoyance. “So, you just want her for food?”
“NO!” said Vainstrel, pointing back at Dermot. “I see her as more than a food source. She truly gives me life.”
Dermot waved his hand in the air. “I’m sorry I have to say this, Vainstrel, since you and your family have been so kind for me, but that’s just not going to happen.”
Vainstrel’s eyes narrowed.
“I mentioned I’m friends with her brother, right?”
“The Alamentals are notorious for hating other species that are not witches nor elementals. If you aren’t either – which you aren’t – you have no chance.”
“Then how are you friends with one of them?”
“Because I’m not trying to get with them in any way other than a friendship. You aren’t going to have a chance.”
Vainstrel leered intensely at Dermot.
“Hey! I know what phone I want!”
Spark’s cheery voice cut through the tension that had built up.
Dermot’s salesman smile returned back, glittering as it had been before. “Coming! Please, show me what you would like so that I may fetch it for you!”
Vainstrel followed closed behind Dermot, sneering.
Dermot had disappeared into a backroom, Spark’s old phone and her new phone in hand for a free transfer. Vainstrel and Spark looked at each other. The humid air in the cellular castle seemed to clear as they smiled pleasantly at each other.
Spark tapped her cheek, leaning forward at each other. “You and that salesman seem to know each other!”
Vainstrel nodded. “Yes, I do know Dermot. I see him periodically, when the moon is high and thirsts need to be quenched.”
Spark giggled. “What does that mean?”
“My family runs a blood bank, the largest one in all of Ghopre. We have volunteers from all over who help us, the vampires, with our plight.”
“Tee hee. And what ‘plight’ might that be?”
Vainstrel leaned into Spark’s face, smirking, and holding up a finger. “To respect the free will of all those who are living, so they may not need to fall to our dasterdly jaws. Most vampires do not drink the most fresh blood, preferring to take it from ones that are voluntairly given.”
Spark cocked her head. “They don’t create blood with alchemy?”
Vainstrel laughed. “Of course not, my dear. But I am surprised you have heard of such a legend!”
Spark narrowed her eyes, completely confuzzled. Vainstrel almost-smug smile kind of fell, seeing just how deeply she seemed to be going through her brain for a response. He extended out his hand to her. “Where might you have heard such a thing from?”
Spark’s head snapped back up straight. “I sometimes provide extra electricty to Dr. Gladier.”
“I don’t know who that is.”
“Do you know Dr. Hadley or the secretary, Victorina?”
“Well, they’re vampires like you and they drink blood made from alchemy?”
…there is no way that is possible. Vainstrel turned his head away from Spark, unable to see the curious look on her face. Blood through alchemy? What a legendary feat! Is it worth seeking out this “had-lee” and “victor-reena”? My curiousity is almost aroused.
“If you own a blood bank and none of you vampires want to attack the living, why did you attack me?”
“Ah, yes. What a wonderful thing to question!” replied Vainstrel. He lifted up his index finger. “You see, my family and I are of a unique vampire species creatively titled ‘witch-hunting vampires’. We get the most from witches – the magic that is embued within it truly brings up back to life, for as long as we consume it. While we have reserves for such things, fresh blood offers the briefest boost in life force, restoring us to a life we never knew.”
“…” Vainstrel blushed and hung his head. “I may have also forgotten to take my extra blood along with me that day and was about to collapse.”
Spark gasped. She leaned forward, tilting her head. “Oh my! What were you doing that would make you forget to take blood with you?!”
Vainstrel sat back up, placing one hand on his heart and the other in the air. “I am a stage actor! I was rehearasing for opening night so intensely and for so long, my mind had wandered deeply into my role and forgot to come back out.”
“What happens when you don’t get blood?”
“Well, we are simply inanimate. I would collapse, unmoving. We vampires are mostly certainly a type of living dead, after all – so we must sustain ourself with the life force of the living to continue on! Otherwise, we would be inanimate for all eternity!” He dramatically covered his face with his cape, while leaning into his arm.
“Woooow,” said Spark. “That sounds awful.”
Vainstrel grabbed Spark’s hand with both of his. “I do apologize, Lady Spark, for my absolute rudeness during that time.” He gave her a kiss on the back of her hand.
“Don’t worry about!” replied Spark. She flashed him in a toothy grin. Her cheeks seemed slightly flush. “We met because of it, didn’t we? And now we are out here, with you helping me get a new phone!”
Vainstrel blushed back at her.
“Phone’s done!” chimed Dermot. “Now, that will be 310.31 GP.”
Vainstrel, seemingly clamoring, immeditately pulled out his own phone and payed for it with his electronic wallet.
He could hear Spark audibly gasp happily from beside him.
“Oh my goodness, thank you!” Spark exclaimed, holding her brand new phone in her hand. She was feeding electricity in through the socket at the bottom. Vainstrel could see just how fast her phone was recharging from the charge she was sending in.
“Lady of Lightning, is your gift something you use on the world at large or just something that you keep close to your heart?”
“Tee hee, you can just call me Spark, Vainstrel!”
Vainstrel paused for a moment and nodded his head. “Yes, my dear lady Spark.”
Spark flipped her side ponytail behind her shoulder. “And to answer, I use my electricty for pretty much everyone! It’s my job, after all, to provide electricty to the surrounding towns.”
Vainstrel’s eyebrows raised. “What a way to use the gift that has been bestowed up you! May I ask how you do it at all?”
“Hmm…it’s pretty easy. I just make a ball of lightning and feed it into a special device that will sustain it for about a week, although some places have machine that can sustain it for three months!”
Spark’s eyes glittered. “It really is! You should see how beautiful these giant balls of lightning are!!!” She turned to Vainstrel, as he was guiding her down the cobblestone pathways towards the café. She balled both her fist pumping them up in the air. “And the best part is that I get to help lots of people by cutting costs! I make good money and I have a special, rare skill, so it’s so much fun. And I get to be out all day!”
“What a wonderful time that sounds. Do you see many sights and sounds as you go about?”
“At first, yeah, but it’s kind of boring now. It’s all the same sights. But sometimes I have interesting things happen to me…like you biting me!”
Vainstrel put a hand over his face and blushed. “I-I do a-apologize.”
Spark waved her hand up and down. “I already told you it’s fine, right?”
Vainstrel nodded in response. I cannot help but be embarassed by my own lack of foresight.
Spark tapped her cheek. “Did you say you were an actor?”
“Yes, I did!”
Spark tapped on her phone. From what Vainstrel could see, she was pulling up the web browser. “What show are you in? I’d love to buy some tickets?”
Vainstrel gently place a hand over her hand, lowering the phone. “Spark, you do not need to do such a thing. When my next show is ready to perform, I will personally deliver VIP tickets to you.” He glanced up into Spark’s golden-brown eyes. He could see the witch meeting his, her cheeks read.
Spark placed a hand on her cheek. “Wow, first you buy me a phone and now I’m being given VIP tickets to a show…” She tightly shut your eyes. “I almost feel inspired to do something for you!”
“But you are, Lady Spark!” replied Vainstrel. “You are accompany to the coffee shop.”
Vainstrel opened the intricately detailed door to the coffee shop he had lead them to. The inside, in contrast to the door, was actually very simple – all black and silver with lots of tables and spacing. The only thing detailed inside seemed to be the handwritten menus and signs that plastered the walls. Even the bits of color from the plants were simple.
Vainstrel and Spark walked up to the counter.
“Oooo!!” squealed Spark. Vainstrel looked over, seeing the spunky witch jumping up and down. Spark pointed to a menu category on the wall entitled “Hot Chocolate”. Vainstrel glanced over it and saw exactly what she was so excited about.
“They have it!”
“Did I not inform you of such a thing, Lady Spark?”
“You did, you did!” Spark raised her hand up in the air, prompting one of the baristas – a partially transformed werewolf with quite a few piercings and a rock star-edge – to go to the register.
“How may I help you today?”
“Can I get a medium spicy hot chocolate with coconut milk?”
“Right away…and for you?”
Vainstrel lifted up his finger. “Ah yes, my usual.”
“Plain earl gray tea, medium?”
The werewolf quickly moved their fingers over the cash register’s touchscreen. “Will that be all?”
Vainstrel drew out his phone and opened up an app. From this app, he pulled up a barcode and scanned it on the scanner right in front of the register.
The werewolf nodded.
“That will be all,” replied Vainstrel.
With three taps on the screen, the register dinged and Vainstrel lead Spark over to the tables.
“Wow, you must come here a lot!” said Spark.
Vainstrel smiled as he took a seat. “And what, my dear, has prompted such a comment?”
Spark sat down. She folded her hands and rested her chin on them. She grinned. “Because they knew your order.”
“You are indeed right. I do come here quiet often. I do not get to drink very often in the castle that is my home, as I am not active during the times in which my parents make it.”
“I don’t get to drink spicy hot chocolate too much either.” Spark sighed. “My siblings think I’m weird for it, so usually there’s just plain hot chocolate.”
Vainstrel dramatically covered half of his face “How I know the feeling of such a dilemma! For my very dear older sister, Ria, hates tea. As I try to ask for her to brew, she rejects me hard and acts so cruel.”
“Oh? You have a sister? How many other siblings do you have?”
“Just my older sister, Ria, and her kind-hearted husband, my brother-in-law Vladimir. I am unsure on how they work together, but I suppose he is just far too kind to my wretched sister.”
Spark giggled. “I think I know what you mean. Most of my family doesn’t really like me much.”
Vainstrel eyes popped. Spark’s normal sparkle in her eyes seemed to die. Her gaze was downcast at the table. He immeditately grabbed Spark’s hands. “Well, I like you!”
Spark was clearly startled.
“Ah, I’m sorry. I didn’t mean to startle you like that.”
Spark blushed, scratching her cheek. “It’s okay. I didn’t expect you to say something like that. Thank you.”
Vainstrel lifted up his finger. “I shall be right back.” He slipped out of his seat and went to the counter.
Vainstrel placed a hand over his heart. My, she had such a look unbefitting for someone who is full of the spark of life. Who could possible hate her? Although I suppose one could ask why my wretched sister hates me so much too..
Vainstrel grabbed the drinks and returned to his seat.
“Why…does your sister hate you?” asked Spark, grasping a hold of her cup on both sides.
Vainstrel paused for a moment. …I am aware she is a witch, but is she a mind-reader too? He folded his arms and sat back. “I am not too sure myself. She has wailed for days on end that I ‘stole’ from her, but I have no idea what of.” He clenched his fist. “Worse of all, she repeatedly calls me a ‘cheap. background. STANDEE’.”
Vainstrel huffed as Spark giggled in response. “I’m a pretty well-known stage actor around here and have roles that suited me quite well. Not one since over a decade ago would qualify as such a terrible thing as a cheaply-made background prop!”
“Where would she even get that from?”
“I am not quite sure myself. She has never attended a single one of my stage plays. There is no way that she would have such insight into my abilities or my position!”
Vainstrel brought the pipping hot tea to his lips and took a big gulp to calm his nerves. Just thinking about that wretched sister of mine fires me in such a destructive way.
“And what about you, my dear Spark? You said your family does not like you very much – may I ask for the reason why? If I am not overstepping boundaries.”
Spark slowly sipped her hot chocolate. Vainstrel watch her gaze down cast once more. Her lips were smiling, but he knew they were just full of sadness. “I don’t mind you asking,” replied Spark. Her normally cheery voice fell fairly flat.
Vainstrel flinched. Although the thought wasn’t full formed, he couldn’t help but feel like he had made a mistake asking.
“Hmmm…where do I start??” wondered Spark. “I guess it’s got something to do with the Grand Uncle?”
“Yeah. Um…hmm…” Spark took a sip of her hot chocolate. “Our family is descendend from a woman who was the child of a witch and King of the Elementals. Uuuumm…I guess…how do I explain this.”
Vainstrel removed the cup from his lips, carefully listening to Spark. He watched her nervous taps on the side of her cup and sparks of electricty dance over her head. Despite the sadness, she looked beautiful.
“So, the witch – who we call the Grand Mother – had a child with someone else, I think before hand?? And my ancestor cursed her half-brother so no one can talk to them?? Something like that. Well, anyway, supposedly Grand Uncle is that child…but like, I don’t know. My family doesn’t usually refer to him as ‘Grand Uncle’ either, but I think that’s weird because the Grand Mother is his mother??”
The sparks floating around Spark’s head were getting larger and more winding. Vainstrel reached out a hand. “Spark, my dear, you are sparking.”
Spark took a few deep breaths, placing a hand on her heart. “Phew, thanks for telling me!” She rubbed her forehead. “Who would have known what would happen if they had gotten any more intense?”
“Would you like to continue to talk about your Grand Uncle?”
Spark smushed her cheeks together. “I think my mind might get fried if I talk anymore.”
Vainstrel took her hand and kissed it. “Perhaps another day, when you are ready.”
Spark shrugged and giggled awkwardly.
Vainstrel sat back and sipped his tea. I have not a single clue in what she is speaking about. But it may perhaps be an important piece as to why Dermot has stated that her family do not like outsiders, hmmm?
“Do you need blood in your tea?”
Vainstrel put down his cup, cocking his head at Spark. “Could you repeat that once for me, my lady Spark?”
“You said you need blood to live, right? Do you need blood in your tea?”
“What a wonderful question! Yes, normally I put some in, but I did not bring any vials out with me today.”
The next thing Vainstrel knew, Spark’s hand was hovering over his cup of tea, close to his face. “Would you like some of mine?” inquired Spark. Vainstrel couldn’t help but blush.
Vainstrel slid back a bit in his chair, looking up at Spark. “A-are you sure?”
“Yeah! Sure! Let me just turn down my currents.”
Again, there was her beaming, radiant smile that set Vainstrel vampire heart ablaze.
Vainstrel gently, but firmly, grasped her wrist and her hand. “Let me know when.”
“Hmmm. Okay! They’re turned down. You can add some to your drink now!”
Vainstrel opened his tea with his free hand, moving the lid over enough to allow Spark’s blood to drop inside. He barred his fangs – which had grown considerably in length as he went in for her hand – and nicked her just enough to draw a bit of blood. He watched his tea stain crimson and little sparks of light dance upon its surface.
When he finished, he withdrew his fangs for the most part and licked her nicked finger with his tongue. The coppery, irony taste of her blood and the clear remnants of her electric current lit up his body, even though it was such a small, brief moment of contact and mere drops.
He released Spark’s hand, seeing her flushed. She gently wiped her hand with a napkin. Vainstrel covered back up his tea and swirled it around.
“Thank you, Spark.”
Vainstrel watched Spark as he took a sip of his earl gray tea mixed with the blood of his lightning mistress. He wasn’t sure if she was frightened from her stuttering, but he could see her body language and facial expression told a totally different story. If Vainstrel had to guess, she was probably fidgetting her feet underneath the table from how much she seemed to be moving around.
He could feel the dancing sparks of electricty on his tongue and down his throat. The rush of the blood mixed with tea gassed his body up like an automobile and a quick glance down at his own skin indicated the effects of drinking the blood was working: he was becoming alive. His normally his deathly white skin flushed a beautiful shade of that was closer to peach. The extra jolts from the electricty made his heart pump.
Spark pointed at Vainstrel’s hand. “You totally changed color!”
Vainstrel nodded. “Yes. As I said once before – we are witch-hunting vampires. One of the gifts is a temporary restoration of life when we drink the blood of witches…such as yourself. My skin is doing nothing more than turning to its form had I ever been alive.”
“What does that mean?”
Vainstrel continued to sip his tea. “We are unique amongst the vampires for we can leave our very own offspring – there is no need to convert, as we can birth. Of course, that still takes a considerable amount of resources. It is not recommended except for those with such resources, like my family.”
Spark nodded her head. “Ooooooh, so like the fact you guys run a blood bank allows you to have extra access to witches’ blood so you can actually be alive long enough to have children…right?”
Vainstrel lit up and snapped his fingers. “That is quite right! How marverlous!”
“It’s quite amazing the amazing feat that my own mother managed to have both my older sister and yours truly. For most witch-hunting vampires like us are not so fortunate enough for such a feat.”
“Wow, that seems really hard.”
“We don’t have anything like that – but we are born with these birthmarks.” Spark outstretched her arms.
Vainstrel looked down, observing the markings on Spark’s arms. The black markings cuffed around her wrists and ran up her arms, creating a lightning bolt shape as it run up her arms, disappearing underneath her sleeves. Vainstrel’s eyes followed the markings through where they disappeared and soon realized something. They run over her body.
Spark pointed to her eyes. “They’re all over our bodies, even my eye ‘make-up’ is a marking too.”
Vainstrel grabbed Spark’s right arm, gently stroking the birthmarks. They were clearly no different from her skin – they were on her skin. “Do you all have the same marks of beauty?”
Vainstrel’s eyes stayed on Spark’s markings, but could see from his perphrials, Spark was shaking her head. “No. They’re all similar, but they shape differently depending on what element we are. Kind of like how you’re a witch-hunting vampire, we’re elemental witches. We’re born with the ability of an element of some sort…well, sometimes a sub-element like me…and we all have markings that represent them on us.”
Vainstrel, his hands still grasping Spark’s hand and his thumbs gently pressed on her wrists, looked up at Spark. His lightning queen’s face continued to look flushed and she still seemed someone fidgety.
Most of all, she looked beautiful.
Vainstrel slid his hands into Spark’s, grasping it lightly. Their eyes met.
“U-um, I suppose we should finish drinking our drinks…they’re probably cold by now.”
“Ah yes, we should.” Vainstrel let go of her hand and watched Spark sheepishly drink from her cup.
Vainstrel continued to sip his tea. He couldn’t but watch Spark and he could see her watching him back.
Everything about Spark was beautiful. He couldn’t even pinpoint one thing – her looks, her personality, her facial expressions. Just everything was so beautiful. And there was something more he wanted than to form a blood contract with her.
He couldn’t help but feel that way – deep from within him, rising up, was the desire to only draw blood from her. Her blood was perfectly balanced and pontent, plus the electricty…goodness, what a charge!
But it wasn’t even just her blood.
The way she smiles true to her name and the way we get along like flow of water. He closed his eyes and slightly blushed. And how could I not forget the generaosity she offered through kindly giving me her blood today. With no hesitation.
I MUST, thought Vainstrel. I must absolutely get a blood contract with her. There is no one else who is as perfect as Lady Spark.
He was pretty sure it was the lighting, but Spark seemed to be glowing a bit more in his eyes. Or perhaps it was the blood in the tea restoring him to life. Either way, she seemed to be absolutely glittering.
DING DING DING BRRRRRING
“Ah!” exclaimed Spark. She jumped up from her seat.
Vainstrel put down his cup, looking up at Spark. She was staring down at her brand new phone. She then glugged down her spicy hot chocolate, wiped her mouth with a napkin and put her phone back into her skirt pocket.
She clasped her hands together. “I gotta head out to do work now! Thank you SO much for today, Vainstrel. I appreciate everything you done, from the phone to the drinks!”
What? She is leaving! Vainstrel himself stood up and grabbed her hand.
They both gazed into each other’s eyes long enough that time seemed to stop.
Vainstrel could feel himself trembling inside. He was hoping she wouldn’t notice.
“Will you be able to grace me with your prescence once more through the short electronic letters from your cellular device?”
Spark smiled at Vainstrel in such a way he couldn’t help but start to melt. Indeed, she was glowing. “Sure.” Spark took back out her phone and after a few swipes and taps of the screen, Vainstrel heard his own phone ding.
He let go of Spark’s hand to grasp the sides of his own phone to reply back.
He looked up, seeing Spark wave to him. “I’ll be waiting for your reply – I will see you later!”
And then she left.
Vainstrel felt his face completely heat up, watching her, as if in slow-mo walk out the door and disappear down the streets with only the briefest glance back at him. He looked down at the simple text message she had sent to him: “Hi Vainstrel! Thank you for everything for today!”
He plopped down in his chair and covered his face.
She…she replied back to my letters. I got to spend the day with her. She was not ignoring me. She was not reject me. She willing gave her blood over to me and listened to me. She understands the dramatic way in which I speak. I…I…
He lifted up his tea and chugged it down, finishing off every last drop that made its way out of the cup. He slammed the empty cup down back on the table. His face was still deeply flushed.
…WILL get a blood contract from her.