Your VIP Trial is active! Time Remaining:

Eyes Open - Part 17
Published Aug 20, 2012

Written By



Page 1 / 43

The earth is warm next to my ear
Insect noise is all that I hear
A magic trick makes the world disappear
The skies are dark, they're dark but they're clear

A distant motorcade and suddenly there's joy
The snow and ticker tape blurs all my senses numb
It's like the finish line where everything just ends
The crack of radios seems close enough to touch

Cold water, cleaning my wounds
A sad parade, with a single balloon
I'm done with this, I'm counting to ten
Bluest seas, running to them

I feel like I am watching everything from space
And in a minute I'll hear my name and I'll wake
I think the finish line's a good place we could start
Take a deep breath, take in all that you could want

“Finish Line”, Snow Patrol

The earth is warm next to my ear
Insect noise is all that I hear
A magic trick makes the world disappear
The skies are dark, they're dark but they're clear

A distant motorcade and suddenly there's joy
The snow and ticker tape blurs all my senses numb
It's like the finish line where everything just ends
The crack of radios seems close enough to touch

Cold water, cleaning my wounds
A sad parade, with a single balloon
I'm done with this, I'm counting to ten
Bluest seas, running to them

I feel like I am watching everything from space
And in a minute I'll hear my name and I'll wake
I think the finish line's a good place we could start
Take a deep breath, take in all that you could want

“Finish Line”, Snow Patrol
It was cold here. So, so very cold. The water from the tap had been dripping into the sink ever since he’d arrived here. There were no windows. He had no phone, no watch. The single light bulb kept flicking in and out, causing periods of complete and utter darkness.

The passage of time no longer existed.

And thus he only had his thoughts and regrets.

It was torture.
Not so far away in Foxgrove....

"Honey, who was that?" When Rosalind didn't answer immediately, Connor set his coffee down.

"Honey? ... who was that?"

She sighed. "It was someone who needs a favour."
"And whom might that be?"

"You don't know him."

"Try me."
"Connor, I don't have time for this. I have a friend in trouble, I need to go help." She walked away to the door. He followed.
They opened their front door to find a man with a shock of red hair standing there, his finger poised on the door bell.

“Officer Frio? I’m sure you remember me; I’m Solomon McGraw.”
Back in Sunset Valley....

Anna stood at the gates of the imposing and run down mansion. It had only been a short time since she had lived there, but it was derelict beyond recognition. Ivy grew up the walls and the windows had been vandalised. The front door swung on its hinges in the breeze, evidently smashed up by looters.

Anna moved to the intercom and bravely pressed the buzzer. Nothing happened. She pressed again.
“She’s not here.” Anna grumbled to Alucard as she returned to the car.

“I told you that I couldn’t feel a presence.” He said, a little too smugly for her liking.

“I was so sure that she’d be here though....”

“Where else could she be?” Alucard questioned as they glided down the hill.

Anna looked out the window.

They trekked through the undergrowth, the brambles snaring in their trousers and slicing at their shoes. The warehouse which had once been the bustling centre of Claire’s organization now stood empty. It cast a lonesome and ugly figure on the rolling hills behind it.

Alucard placed his hand against what had been the back entrance door. It was now heavily boarded up and the panes of glass had been smashed.

It was eerily quiet. Too quiet.
“There are people here Anna, I can sense them. We must proceed with caution.” Alucard warned in a hushed tone.

“How will we get in though?” She whispered.

“Easy.” Alucard grinned, flashing his teeth and flexing his fingers.

Anna was just about able to duck as the boards that had been blocking their entrance zoomed over her head.

“Let’s go!” Alucard called.
Inside was not in a much better state of repair than the outside. Boxes and barrels stood around in a jumbled order, an overflowing dumpster had been shoved into the corner and burnt and discarded debris was strewn over the floor.

Anna explained that the warehouse was a rabbit warren of small and large hangers, with offices dotted all over the place. Even though she had worked for her mother’s organization for a year she still didn’t know the full layout of the expansive warehouse.

“Let’s spilt up” Alucard murmured into her ear. With a slight breeze he was gone.
Anna shivered. It was cold in the warehouse. She set off steadily and cautiously. Rats scurried beneath her feet in the basement warehouses, the grates that separated them reverberated the noise around. Pigeons that were roosting in the rafters shuffled and cooed gently; they sensed the disturbance and didn’t like it.

Sometime later she stumbled upon a set of stairs, she cautiously began to climb them; the wood was rotting and didn’t support her weight very well.
Suddenly, there was a sound behind her; human feet walking over a grate. She turned to look but stumbled and fell down the stairs. A shadow moved in the darkness. A blood curdling scream rose to her throat. “I didn’t mean to startle you my dear.” Alucard said as he moved swiftly from the shadows.

Anna breathed a sigh of relief. This place sure was spooky and Alucard had done nothing to calm to shattered nerves.

“I’ve finished my sweep of this part of the building. I haven’t found anything... Or anyone for that matter. I thought I’d let you know that I’ve moving on.” And with that he was gone.

“Damn Vampires.” Anna muttered under her breath. She brushed herself down, winching as she caught her now bruised legs and continued her assent to the next level.
Anna stole up the stairs as quietly as she could. The upper level was even quieter and darker than the one below. She pushed herself behind some crates and stuck to the wall. She’d nearly reached the other side of the room when a voice chilled her bones.

“Laura. I know that you’re here. It’s no use hiding anymore....”
Anna gasped in shock. She shifted her weight slightly to get closer to the wall. The rotting floor boards creaked beneath her feet and startled the roosting birds. They flapped and cried and swooped down upon her. In her fright she jumped away from the wall and ran straight into a pool of light.

And straight into Claire.
“There you are! See, I knew that you couldn’t hide from mummy.”

Anna recoiled back in shook. Her mother grinned an evil cat like smile at her obvious fear.

“Where is he?” Anna asked, a surge of bravery filtering through her heart.
“All in good time Laura. You took something from me; therefore I took something from you.”

“WHERE IS HE?!” Anna screamed at her mother.
“You don’t get to ask questions dear daughter; you took my life from me, sticking me in that prison and made me suffer. Now it’s your turn to share my pain!”

“Pain? Pain? You don’t know pain Claire! You don’t love anybody, never cared for another human. It was all money, all business, and all power to you! You destroyed mine and Sonny’s lives, your domination has warped us both, and your determination to control has ruined every chance at happiness for us both!”

Claire laughed.

“You’re the twisted one my dear child; always the victim. Stiles was right, I was always too soft on you, you are just a spoilt, selfish brat! Look at how long it took for you to get over David; two weeks was it? You can’t have ever loved him.”
Anna moved to strike her mother, but Claire acted faster. Her fist connected with Laura’s jaw and sent her sprawling to the floor. “That’s right Laura, kneel at my feet and beg for forgiveness as you should; but I will not accept it! You shouldn’t have come alone; you are a fool for trying to take me on alone and for that you won’t ever see Max McDermott again, believe me!” Claire shrieked manically at her daughter. She walked away, leaving Anna with a spinning head.

A slight, unnatural breeze brushed past Anna.

“I didn’t come alone though mother...” she muttered as the lights popped in front of her eyes and the darkness took her over.

The light had gone out and so Max had curled himself up onto the cold and hard bed. His clothes were damp from the leaking ceiling and his stomach rumbled with hunger. A cough had already settled in his chest and rattled his bones whenever it came to the surface. Sleep was hard to come by; but somehow it found him and finally engulfed him.
There was a noise coming from the corner of the room. The sound of a lock clicking and of someone breathing quietly disturbed him and awoke him. He raised his arms above his head groggily, trying to protect them from a possible beating.

“Maximus, I am not going to hurt you, so you can lower your hands now.” A quiet but familiar voice commanded.
“Alucard? What are you doing here?” He asked as he swung his legs unsteadily off the bed. Even though he knew the Der Blutegel’s well, Alucard’s unnatural glowing red eyes still made him uneasy.

“Anna and I have come to get you out of here. Can you walk?” Alucard questioned him sharply.

“I think so; my ankle hasn’t been steady though.”

“Take my arm then and let us go; I sense trouble that I may have to deal with.”
At the same time...
Sonny had explained to the couple that his recently released mother had gone slightly insane and decided to take revenge upon the one person his mother blamed the most; his sister Laura, who was living by the alias of Anna. Claire had recently kidnapped Laura’s new boyfriend and was holding him hostage at the now derelict headquarters of her old corporation. It was at that point that Rosalind had confessed to Connor that this was the person she was off to save as a favour to an old friend.

“... and so you're willing to break the law and attack someone you don't even know because of something a VAMPIRE said?" Connor protested futilely as his wife steamed ahead, following Sonny. "Ros, please, why won't you let me handle this?"

"I let you handle it, and look where we are! We can't wait on the police anymore, Connor. There are lives in the balance. If you don't want to come, I won't make you, but stop trying to stop me!”
Rosalind stopped at the corner as instructed by Sonny; Connor stopped because his wife had stopped. He didn't like this harebrained scheme, and that was, in part, because he didn't like Sonny. Even though Sonny had been a teen when his mother had been arrested, he’d already developed a very grown-up ability to be evasive, obstructive.

Connor fought the urge to call for back up. He’d been forbidden to do so, his wife was determined that they would handle this by themselves.
They sat behind the corner and watched as Sonny strolled into the middle of the yard, standing in the direct line of two security cameras.

He was standing there for five minutes before Rosalind got restless.

“I can't believe this, but he's actually managing to be SLOWER than the police,” she grumbled.

Before Connor could snap at her, the door opened and a figure walked out into the sunshine.
“Sonny! You took your time, we thought you’d abandoned us in Riverview when we were getting that piece of trash!”

“Jason Manning?” Connor muttered. "What the hell is HE doing here?"

“Jason? You are my mother’s spare part?” Sonny asked in equal shock.
“Spare part? Right hand man more like!” he boasted, “I’m going to be the one who brings Claire McGraw back to her former glory!”

“But why?” Sonny asked, shocked.

“Because she is an amazing person who took care of me and showed me the light; Laura isn’t as perfect as David thought! She let him go to that hospital; he wasn’t even on duty!”

“David died doing what he loved!”

“But he didn’t have to die! I lost the only family I ever had that day!”
“You had your father, aunt and uncle left!”

“They didn’t count; they were just, how did you put it ‘spare parts’!”

“But why my mother?!

“She gave my deadbeat father loans to pay for me and raised two children who abandoned her; I admired her when I was writing about her story. But my editor wasn’t sympathetic towards my view on her; apparently being kind in the media to a woman arrested for over two hundred counts of fraud and burglary wasn’t done and I was fired! Before she left jail, she sought me out, gave me a house and a job!”

“That’s not the real reason though Jason is it? What was it, she needed a son and you needed a mother?” Sonny mocked.

Fury spread across Jason’s face. Sonny evidently had touched a nerve and Jason flung himself at Sonny.
“Damn it, what are they doing?!” Connor hissed, his view obscured by the dust cloud kicked up by the two fighting men.

“I think Sonny might be winning...” Rosalind responded, craning her neck.

“Keep quiet, don't give us away..."
Sonny indeed won. Jason was left on the floor, still shaking with rage.

Sonny began to walk away and Connor moved to make the arrest.
But Jason wasn’t having it and got back up, brushed himself down and charged at Sonny. Rosalind took her cue, and leapt out, foot first. Jason never knew what hit him and was sent flying into the air, landing face first in the dirt. Connor now took HIS cue, and finally called for backup. With Jason cuffed too securely for comfort to a drainpipe, Rosalind and Connor went to meet the convoy of police that were soon to arrive. Alucard pulled Max through the debris of the destroyed door himself and Anna had entered through.

“You’ll be safe out here; help is on the way.” Sirens could be heard in the distance and the lights appeared over the hill.

“What do you mean help is on the way? Aren’t you staying here?”

Alucard laughed.

“There are more people who need help Maximus, not just yourself. Tell Rosalind that she looks well.” Alucard nodded to the distance.

"Who's Rosalind?" Max asked.

But Alucard was gone.
Claire left her daughter on the floor and walked away into the darkness, weaving her way through the broken and splintered crates to the stairs. It was suddenly cold and she felt uneasy; like there was a predator stalking her. Alucard steeled himself and let out a terrifying roar. It reverberated the around the warehouse and silenced the SWAT teams who were waiting outside. Connor looked up from his phone call and Max stared at the building, his pulse quickening at the predators roar.

Claire stumbled as she began to run from the source of the noise, her breathing ragged and uneven.
Alucard caught her square in the back and Claire fell to the floor, catching her head on the balustrade as she did.

He stood over her as she struggled to get up.

“And now you kneel at my feet Claire McGraw; you don’t get to treat your daughter that way, she’s more human than you’ll ever be you monster.”

He bared his teeth for her to see and let out a feral snarl. Claire screamed in fear.

“Bother your daughter ever again and I will make you sorry.”
The sound of heavy duty boots upon the bottom of the staircase caused Alucard to pause. His roar had given him away and now was the time to leave.

He straightened up and ran for the fire exit he’d located earlier. Regular humans should not be aware of his presence. He touched Anna’s pulse as he passed; it was beating strong and true. He moved some boxes to create a path for her to be found. A minute had barely passed and the SWAT boots started to pound the floorboards at the top of the stairs.

At inhuman speeds he pushed open the fire escape and leapt to his escape. He turned at the calls of discovery of both Claire and Anna. He took a deep breath and in a heartbeat he was gone.
Thanks for reading!

A big thank you to Spladoum for agreeing to let Rosalind and Connor get their hands dirty from a slightly hair brained scheme that was brewed up at Christmas! Thanks for being so patient with me!

Other Stories

Add Smilie

spitzmagic VIPSep 3, 2012

Girlfriend, that was fantastic. Bravo!...loved every second of it. Gees that was an awesome chapter. CLAP CLAP CLAP!\:rah\:

fruitopia VIPAug 22, 2012

Can this get any better? This is a great chapter and it was worth the wait.

spladoumAug 21, 2012

Heeeeey ... don't I know two of those people? \:D I'm really, really glad to see Sonny trying to do the right thin. As for that poor little clown trying to become Claire's surrogate son ... bad call, my friend. Very bad call.

jv_137Aug 21, 2012

wow... even you gonna wait for a long time it's still beautiful and amazing story..!

Log in to TSR

Not a Member yet?

Download blocked
Please turn off your ad-blocker to download.
If ads are a problem you can become a VIP member and enjoy an ad-free site.

Getting this message with no ad-blocker active?
Go here for help .
Download Basket
Basket example
As a VIP member, you can add up to 1 Gb of custom content in your Download Basket and download it all together in just One Click.
Start your VIP membership for as low as $3/Month.
TSR CC Manager
Basket example
As a VIP member, you can One Click download, install and manage your custom content fast and easy with the TSR CC Manager.
Start your VIP membership for as low as $3/Month.