Carlene and Detective Cushing had arrived at the police station. They had already contacted Michelle to let her know what happened.
As soon as Carlene entered the station all eyes turned on her, and not in a good way. She really didn’t want to go there, but Cushing said it was best to get it over now, as she would have to work with them.
It was nothing compared to when they entered Michelle’s office. Michelle had a cross around her neck and was holding a stake in her hand.
“A bit rude to carry those in front of our guest.” Cushing said.
“Well I only extend pleasantries to people Cushing” Michelle snapped back.
Carlene interrupted “look lets just get to the point. We are going to fight a group of Demons, probably more dangerous than any even this city has ever seen before. They’ve been capturing children. We’ll most likely die, but there’s a chance that we might be able to save just a few of them. Are you going to help us? Or are you going to put a stupid petty dislike of me above some children’s lives darling?”
Michelle didn’t want to admit Carlene was right, not only because she hated admitting that Carlene was right, but Carlene’s theory of there being some master criminal behind the supernatural activities in the town in some ways made her feel that her life’s work was pointless.
She had spent decades fighting both the crime and the occult in this town, but now it seemed that all she had been doing was tackling the symptoms, whilst this Vampire, having only been here a short while had finally discovered the root of the city’s problems.
Michelle hated Carlene more than ever, but for now she had swallow her pride. The safety of the children had to be put above all else.
“Okay”, Michelle said, practically through gritted teeth. “I’ll assemble a team to help you. Though I can’t promise they won’t stake the Vampire on principle. I’ll accompany you. I want to be there, just in case you have been duped by the Vampire. Its not the first time you’ve been duped by a Demon is it, Cushing?”
Cushing protested, but Michelle shut him down by reminding him that they had more important things to talk about.
“Well maybe you could try not being such a bitch and then we could all work together much better?” Carlene interrupted.
Michelle decided to leave it at that as otherwise she knew it would never end.
“Well Vampire, you’re the big expert on these Demons? What weapons, spells do we need to take these things down?”
“First of all my name is Carlene. Second of all I’m not an expert on these things at all. No one is, but there is one spell that might just work against them. Its a special kind of potion. Brewed by Witches many years ago called Iostek. They mixed all of the different elements, natural, magical that are harmful to most known Demon species together.
“Rose knows how to cobble the spell together. Her dad discovered the recipe from a group of Witches he captured years ago. The Witches were nice girls, but of course much like you, he was such an arsehole he didn’t care and tried to get right of them anyway. He agreed to leave em alone if they gave him this new secret weapon. Of course once they did he handed them over to the mob regardless. It takes quite a lot out of Rose to make the potion as she’s not a Witch, but she should have a small phial of it by the end of the day.”
“A small phial?” Michelle responded? “How the hell is that going to help us against an army?”
“Well” Carlene responded. “Based on what I’ve been told about these Demons, they seem to be turning masses of children into members of their own kind. Now there are only two options. Either they are infecting them directly like a Vampire. Or they have polluted the air to the point where the children’s bodies can be easily altered. This seems like the most likely option for me. The Demon said that they do it over a slow period of time. Direct infection tends to spread a lot faster.
If they have polluted the air, then there is obviously a source in their base. All we have to do is fuse the phial with the source, and this chemical will be spread throughout the base and kill all of the Demons, whilst leaving the children untouched.”
“But Carlene“, Cushing said “The poison will also kill you too?”
“I’m not seeing any problems with this plan” Michelle said in response with a smile.
Ignoring Michelle’s petty taunts, Carlene told Cushing that she would have just a few minutes to escape. Though Cushing tried to convince her not to come on the mission, Carlene said that they needed her, and that whilst she had no wish to die again, she was more than willing to risk her own life, just to give the children a better chance.
Back in the Soldiers base meanwhile, the Demons had reached the end of their tether with the latest group of children. Normally they’d have broken them by now, but the current crop of kids had resisted the monsters cruel mind games and threats.
The commander of this particular cell was worried. He had to have converted a particular amount of children by a certain point or else he would be demoted. The Soldiers never killed their own under any circumstances unless they were traitors, but to be demoted and then considered a failure was in some ways worse than being killed.
The commander was taking his frustrations out on his men. Again such a thing was seen as a sign of a weak leader, but he couldn’t face taking responsibility for his own actions yet.
This particular commander had been waiting for a chance to lead his own platoon for centuries, and now he had finally got it, but he was about to be demoted all because he couldn’t break the children. He wanted to tear the little bastards throats out for costing him his career.
He was preparing his final round of tests for the children. Here he would force them to murder each other. The Soldiers generally didn’t like to do this, as it would waste potential recruits, but again the commander was desperate. Getting the strongest who would survive was still better than almost no recruits.
As the Soldiers prepared to set up the arena, where the children would be forced to fight each other to the death, the Commander prayed to the spirit of Orakos not to let anything else go wrong this night. Sadly his prayers would fall on deaf ears.
Carlene, Michelle, Cushing and 6 officers had managed to make their way into the base thanks to the help of Julia’s family. Having to ask for a child’s possession to use magic to track them down would be a difficult conversation, but fortunately Julia’s parents were aware of the paranormal. Julia’s father’s brother had been possessed by a Demon many decades ago.
They were still skeptical about allowing magic to be used to find their daughter however. Though they knew it existed, they had no idea about the true nature of magic and they were scared it could hurt her. Detective Cushing however assured her that no harm would come to Julia as a result of the spell.
Rose meanwhile had prepared the potion for Carlene. Performing the spell of bringing together so many elements put such a strain on the being doing it, that it would normally kill most humans (hence why Rose had never bothered to give it to the Darrow police force, and why her own father had ultimately never used it.)
Still even though she was a Ghost, the energy from the spell still greatly weakened her spirit and she had to take time out. Sadly she wouldn’t have been able to go with them anyway, as whilst magics could allow her to temporarily leave her house, she could not leave this dimension or else her spirit would dissipate.
Whilst this was a unique incident, Rose couldn’t help but feel inadequate compared to Carlene. Obviously she was proud of what Carlene had accomplished in protecting the city, but still when she saw how little she was able to do for the people, when she had once been one of the greatest of all Vampire hunters she couldn’t help but feel depressed.
The locator spell revealed that the entrance to the Soldiers base was just outside of Darrow.
The base had the appearance of a gigantic castle when it was made visible. Carlene using her Vampiric strength jumped to the nearest window ledge. She planned to crawl through the window first to see if the cost was clear for the others, but unfortunately for the Vampire, the magic of the base could detect the presence of even the tiniest microbe that entered. The alarm instantly went off, and 3 Soldiers instantly appeared in a puff of smoke around Carlene. Carlene did her best to try and defend herself, but even her Vampiric strength was no match for the power of the Soldiers, and she was outnumbered too. They overpowered her relatively easily.
The others could hear the alarm outside. “Great plan Vampire. We lasted all of 2 seconds. Either you are evil and set us up, or you’re just really, really thick.” Michelle said angrily to herself.
Sadly before they could do anything, a massive group of Soldiers surrounded them. The cops tried to fire their weapons at the Soldiers, but it was of no avail and the soldiers overpowered all of them effortlessly.
Their attack had ended in a dismal failure before it could even begin. Had it not been for the fact that the Soldiers wanted to find out who was behind the attack (knowing that no ordinary person could find their base) then they would have killed them all now.
In truth there was no way any of them could have entered without the Soldiers knowing.
Carlene, Cushing and the rest were taken before the leader of this group of Soldiers.
The Leader was shocked to see a Vampire among them. What could it possibly want here? The children to feed on? There are other, more easier ways for it to acquire blood. The Vampire must be an agent he thought. There were plenty of Demons and Sorcerers who wanted to know what the secrets to the Soldiers powerful weapons were and they often sent agents in.
“Tell me Vampire who paid you to try and steal our weapons and magics. I’ll pay you double. You Vampires are all such dirty, selfish little cowards that I’m sure you have no loyalty to your master. I’m in a hurry and I’d like to know so tell me.”
Carlene however responded with “Actually I’m here to help the children. Let them go now and I won’t kill you.”
The Soldiers all burst out laughing in response. They didn’t know what was funnier the idea of a Vampire caring about children or the idea she could harm them!
“I mean it!” Carlene shouted over the Soldiers which brought their mocking laughter to a grinding halt.
“I challenge you to duel leader for the children’s lives.”
Carlene knew that the Soldiers had no honour. Any creatures that would capture children and rely on the dirtiest tactics like they did couldn’t have it, but many Demons were incredibly vain and egotistical. She hoped that the commander wouldn’t want to appear cowardly by simply ordering his men to kill her when she had challenged him to a one on one fight.
Carlene kept taunting the commander. “Are you going to have get these gits to do your dirty work for you? Can’t deal with just one Vampire? I can’t see a little pansy like you, going to fight a bruiser that killed a God when you’re too scared to take me on one on on.”
The Commander knew she was manipulating him, and any other time he might not have given into his hubris. Unfortunately however as many had begun to see him as a weak commander due to his recent mistakes, he was genuinely worried that not taking on a lowly, pathetic, scummy Vampire of all creatures could make things even worse for him.
He agreed to face Carlene in an honourable fight. He hoped it wouldn’t last long. Just a quick stake through the heart and that would be that, but still he ordered all of his men to get the children ready for their final death match too.
He gave Carlene 5 minutes to prepare for the fight, but also ordered that Detective Cushing, Michelle and the rest of the force be taken away to the cells. The Soldiers of course would most likely have no intention of releasing them or the children anyway, even if Carlene did beat the Commander, which none of them entertained as a possibility.
Carlene had kept the phial of the Iostek in her hair. Carlene’s beehive haircut was more than just a nice bit of nostalgia from when she was a human. It was actually a magic weapons chest, bigger on the inside than the outside, with its own defence system. It was also magically fused to her head, with only a quick spell being capable of taking it off, so there was no chance of it falling off in a fight.
Carlene knew that it would have been pointless to use the poison on the guards who captured her, as there was so little of it, so she hid it in her beehive for later. In the 5 minutes she was allowed to prepare for the fight, she sprinkled a tiny bit of it onto the knife she had chosen as a weapon, hoping that it would be enough.
In their cell meanwhile Michelle started to blame Cushing for everything that had happened. She accused Carlene of leading them all into a trap.
“Think about it“Michelle screamed. “She comes up with this fantastic master plan that gets us all captured in like two minutes, whilst she is left alone with the Demons leader? They’re probably drinking the children’s blood together and laughing at how the stupid old man got tricked by a Demon again!”
Michelle instantly regretted what she had said to her friend and mention who finally snapped back furiously at her.
The other officers were somewhat taken aback. They had never seen Cushing who was normally such a mild mannered, soft spoken man erupt in anger and swear. Though they were all on Michelle’s side, they didn’t really know enough about Cushing’s history to comment so they wisely kept out of the continued bickering between Michelle and Cushing.
In the middle of the argument Cushing having calmed himself down somewhat said “You’re the one who is playing into the Demons hands Michelle. We should all be working together to try and find a way out of here, but here we are bickering over the most stupid things.”
“No, what the Demons want is to stop anyone trying to rescue the kids, and they’ve been able to do that thanks to your Vampire friend, intentionally or unintentionally.”
At that point Cushing realised it was pointless to try and convince Michelle to stop. He just hoped the Demons would kill them all soon so he wouldn’t have to keep listening to her ranting about Carlene for much longer.
The duel had begun. It was in a small room, normally reserved for duels between the children.
The Soldiers commander had chosen a gigantic mace as his weapon. Just before the fight The Commander told Carlene that he knew the mace couldn’t kill her, but that he was just going to use it to beat the crap out of her for a bit, before tearing her head off with his bare hands when he was done.
Three Soldiers were watching the fight. They started taunting Carlene, laughing at her and making jokes about the Vampire being “really scary” and how the commander was in for it now.
The Commander and Carlene circled each other for a short time before the Commander was the first to strike, swinging his mace at Carlene’s head, she managed to duck it in time though. It very nearly hit her beehive. If it had done, then it would have given the game away as the Mace would have bounced off of it.
Carlene tried to strike next with her knife, but unfortunately the commander struck her hand first which sent the knife flying out of her hand.
Carlene backed away a little. The commander could see that she was scared and began to laugh at her.
“You should have taken my offer bloodsucker.”
He then jumped through the air at a lightening speed. Too fast for even Carlene, and struck her in the face this time.
As she fell to the floor he struck her multiple times in the back, the legs, the face and her arms.
She tried to hit him back, but the few blows of hers that did manage to connect, barely hurt the monster.
The commander after pummelling Carlene grabbed her by her feet and started swinging her around, and bashing her off the ground before throwing her into a wall.
The impact she made against the wall would have been enough to liquify every bone in a normal human’s body. Carlene’s Vampiric constitution however meant that she didn’t even break a single bone, though it still hurt her probably more than anything else in her life at point!
As she tried to crawl back on to her feet the commander jumped towards her again and grabbed her by the throat.
He slammed Carlene against a wall and placed his hand on her shoulder. He was going to tear her head clean off!
Carlene struggled to get free, but it was no use. The soldiers strength was limitless compared to hers. Carlene in a last ditch effort, reached into her beehive haircut for any kind of weapon she could. She managed to find a small axe. It wouldn’t be able to do any lasting damage to the Commander, but maybe she could distract him long enough.
Carlene struck the axe into the Commanders arm. He didn’t even flinch, but he did look surprised as to where she could have gotten it? She swung it again in his face and this time, he let out a scream, but still held on to her. Carlene swung again and again hitting the monsters in the eyes until eventually he threw Carlene across the room.
Carlene landed just a few feet away from the knife. She quickly headed towards it, but unfortunately before she could reach the knife, the Commander jumped her once again and punched her to the ground.
The Commander then picked Carlene up with both hands and smashed her on his knee. Again for an ordinary person this would be enough to smash them in half. It still almost knocked Carlene out, and when the Commander threw her to the ground, Carlene had practically no strength left.
The Commander picked Carlene up by her left arm. She looked absolutely tiny compared to the giant monster.
The beast started punching her relentlessly in the face. Carlene however managed in the flurry of punches to grab his fist and redirect his fist into her beehive.
The beehive had an emergency system were if someone else tried to reach into it then it would fire various weapons (created by magic) at them.
Again these weapons didn’t do any last damage to the commander, but they caused him enough pain that he dropped Carlene, who made another dash for the knife and managed to grab it this time.
The Commander now overcome with rage charged at Carlene, but this time she was ready for him, and he foolishly thought that she was unprepared. He had no idea about the Iostek and honestly didn’t think that the Vampire had anything that could harm him.
Carlene slashed the Commander across the chest with her knife, piercing his heart in the process. Normally a stab wound to the heart would of course heal instantly for a Soldier, but the poison began to affect the Commander instantly. He stumbled back, began to feel faint, and his knees soon gave way.
He tried to get up but he suddenly had zero strength. The pain, the likes of which he had never felt before, also began to flood through his body too.
Just a few seconds ago he was dangling Carlene in the air and beating her to a bloody pulp. Now he was crawling along the floor, barely able to pull himself forward he was so weak.
The other three Soldiers couldn’t believe what they were seeing. They had NEVER seen one of their own be defeated, and assumed that it was just some trick that the Commander was playing on Carlene.
“P-p-please” he pitifully whimpered, “h-have pity”. The Soldiers had been taught to face death with dignity, and indeed if this had been out on the battlefield, then the Commander would have shown no fear. However he couldn’t bare the thought of dying in such an undignified way. Losing to a lowly Vampire of all things, in front of his men.
Carlene however simply responded with a cold “I’ll make this quick which I’m sure is better than you ever gave your victims.” And she stuck her knife into the monsters skull, killing him instantly.
The other Soldiers recoiled in shock and horror. Even to the end they thought it must be a trick of some kind. Carlene looked up at them all, her face caked in her own blood, her nose broken from the beating she had taken.
Still the Soldiers were more scared of her now, as for the first time they were facing an enemy that could hurt them.
Still they quickly conquered their fear and all 3 of them ran at Carlene. Knowing that it would be foolish to even attempt to take them on, Carlene quickly jumped through the air, and over them just as the monsters got near her.
One of the Soldiers at the back saw her and ran at her before the other two, but Carlene managed to slice two of his fingers off with her knife.
As he staggered back in pain, Carlene then reached into her beehive and searched for the nearest weapon she could find. She managed to fetch a gas bomb which she threw at the three Demons.
The gas obviously had no real effect on the Soldiers. Normally it would be enough to knock out most humans and Demons (though not a Vampire like Carlene as they don’t need to breath.) Still it did distract the monsters long enough for Carlene to slip away.
The Soldier who had lost his two fingers was screaming in pain. He was scared that they hadn’t regrown yet, and worse his whole arm was beginning to go numb.
The elder Soldier looked at the flesh around his severed fingers. “Crafty little bloodsucker” he said. “I don’t know what kind of poison this is, but honestly I’ve never seen anything like it. Don’t worry. Your fingers will grow back eventually. You didn’t get enough of it.”
The Soldiers all looked down at their fallen commander.
“He wasn’t fit to lead us you know” the elder Soldier said. “He didn’t cope well under pressure, he didn’t know how to command respect and authority. He’d just shout and scream like a little child. Still he was devoted to our cause above all else and he deserved better than to die like this. At the hands of a Vampire. We will avenge him.”
Carlene ran through the corridor, down the direction they had taken her “friends”. Along the way she encountered a few more Soldiers, but she used the fact that they honestly didn’t believe she could harm them to her advantage and would look scared when she first came into contact with the Demons, before slashing them across the face.
In one instance she was forced to kill another Soldier when he was able to dodge her attack and punched her against a wall. Acting quickly she was able to slice him in the leg, but even as she tried to run away, he grabbed her by the leg and tried to pull her back, but Carlene managed to jump forward and stab him in the head.
She finally reached the cell. Her superhuman sense of smell allowed her to track the rest of the team, even through the stench of the Soldiers. How ironic Carlene thought. People always used to mock her big nose at school, but now it was helping to save the day.
When she opened the door to the cell, Michelle was genuinely surprised to see her and at first assumed she had come here to gloat, though that idea was quickly shot down.
Carlene explained to the other officers that they needed to find the power source. Carlene said that she could trace it with her sense of smell, Magic left off a certain odour, though Carlene again would need to hone in it, as the entire place had been built with magic.
Carlene stood around trying to pinpoint the smell, whilst Michelle and the rest stood guard over her.
Michelle had been given the knife. Carlene didn’t want to at first as she thought Michelle would probably stick it in her when she wasn’t looking. Still she realised that Michelle was probably the best person to have the knife as she was the most skilled fighter, so she reluctantly gave it to Michelle whilst she tried to concentrate on locating the spell.
Many of the cops were getting nervous however. They wanted to get the hell out of the castle. They normally weren’t so scared because before there was always a chance against an enemy like a Vampire, a Demon, or a Werewolf, but with the Soldiers they felt genuinely helpless.
Just then two platoon’s of Soldiers appeared in puffs of smoke, and cornered Carlene and the cops off at both ends. The cops froze in terror. The new leader of the Soldiers was fixated on Carlene. “You miserable little parasite” he screamed at Carlene. “All you care about is satisfying your own sadistic little urges. We are built for a higher purpose, a war for all of creation itself.”
Whilst he was ranting however Carlene reached into her beehive hairdo and searched around for another weapon. This time she found a tiny Demon that she had kept there. The monster was called a Scralex. Carlene had found it living near the outskirts of Darrow. Scralex’s were a special breed of Demon created to feed on other Demonic creatures. Though no bigger than a house cat, they moved at a lightening speed and had a tremendous strength. The problem with the monsters was that they had been too unpredictable. When people kept them as pets, they had a grisly habit of still turning on and eating their owners if they didn’t get enough Demon flesh.
Fortunately that wasn’t a problem for Carlene and Rose however. As they were both dead then the monster had no desire to feed on their flesh. Rather than simply kill the monster Carlene decided to keep him as a weapon, but obviously she didn’t want the risk of the monster getting free and harming anyone else, so she let it live in her beehive. The monster couldn’t escape unless she wanted it too, and furthermore whilst in the Beehive, the magic’s would quell its hunger, as ultimately being a Demon it did not actually need to eat to survive.
Carlene didn’t like to use it, as it was a vicious monster that in close corners could even attack humans. Still she had no choice and so she pulled it out of her beehive and threw it in the Soldiers new commanders face.
The Commander doubled back in pain, whilst his subordinates gathered round him. The Soldiers from behind tried to advance, but once again Carlene quickly pulled out some more gas bombs and pelted the Soldiers with them.
The Soldiers and the police began to choke, but Carlene being a Vampire who didn’t need to breath was able to pull some of the cops including both Michelle and Cushing past the Soldiers. Sadly however three of the cops were grabbed by the Soldiers in the smoke and literally ripped in half by them.
The Commander meanwhile had managed to pull the Scralex off of his face and threw it to the other end of the room. The little demon quickly scurried away through the Soldiers to Carlene. It had come to see Carlene’s Beehive haircut as its home and so it ran after her and jumped onto her shoulder before leaping into her hair.
“Damn I’ve made it too cosy for the little bugger in there now.” She said to herself. The Scralex though a fearsome predator would never have been able to take on a Soldier in a proper fight. The best it could hope for was a distraction which it had caused.
Fortunately Carlene had been able to locate, roughly where the source of the bases power was. There were 6 floors to the castle and it was on the third. It made sense after all as it needed to be at the centre to radiate to all areas. They were currently on the 5th floor.
Realising that they all wouldn’t be able to outrun the Soldiers to the third floor, Carlene told the cops to head down there ahead of her whilst she did her best to try and hold off the Soldiers.
She knew she’d be lucky to kill one of them, but still she hoped that she could distract them long enough. She gave the remainder of the Iostek to Michelle, whilst she took back the knife.
Michelle was genuinely shocked at Carlene’s actions. Of course this one noble, heroic act wouldn’t be enough to overcome a lifetime of prejudice on Michelle’s part, but for once she not only didn’t mock Carlene, but wished the Vampire good luck.
Carlene faced the Soldiers down. For a few seconds they were scared of her, as they didn’t know what other tricks she had in her hair!. Still they quickly overcame their fear and started attacking her. Carlene managed to cut one of them, before another Soldier swotted her like a fly and smashed her into the ground. She still clutched the knife, even as they kept kicking her. It was the Vampires life line.
The monsters beat Carlene brutally, but in the midst of the kicks and punches she managed to swipe her knife at the knee cap of the lead Soldier which caused him to collapse to the ground. Wasting no time, Carlene leaped at the wound soldier and jumped onto his chest. Before he could swat her off, Carlene buried her knife into the Soldiers forehead, killing him instantly. The other Soldiers were a little taken a back at first. When Carlene stood up wielding the knife, the monsters slowly tried to surround her, but every time she made a gesture with the knife, they backed down a bit.
Carlene started taunting the Soldiers, but this proved to be a mistake. She laughed at them, said the Soldiers were the most overrated Demons she had ever seen, and that she had dealt with ordinary street thugs who were more of a challenge than them. One of the Soldiers got so angry that he overcame his fear and teleported behind Carlene. Before she could react he grabbed her arm with the knife and snapped it like a twig.
Though it healed relatively quickly, Carlene sadly dropped the knife from the pain. The Soldier then picked her up and started to smash her into the walls, before tossing her across the room.
Carlene was now completely helpless as the Soldiers approached her. She tried to fight back but it was pitiful as the monsters beat her. Carlene however continued to taunt them. It was just pride however. Carlene was never the type to not go down fighting, even if she couldn’t actually fight anymore.
Detective Cushing and Michelle’s team meanwhile had made it to the 4th floor where the monsters were running around frantically. They were already nervous due to the inspection from their masters, but the alarm being raised just made things worse.
The crowd of officers knew that they couldn’t sneak past the Soldiers as the police force was simply too big and the floor was just a straight corridor. So they had no choice but to run and hope that some of them could make it to the next floor.
At least 10 of them were butchered. Detective Cushing despite being older was one of the “lucky” few who managed to make it to the door to the 5th floor simply because he was at the front of the group. He along with all of the others who had made it, had been forced to abandon any officers who had be caught behind. A few officers would turn back and try and help their friends, but they to the last were slaughtered.
Once they had managed to make it to the third floor, the surviving officers saw that the third floor was the dungeon where the children were kept. Much like the fourth floor, it too was just a straight corridor, with several rooms on either side. The officers frantically looked through the window of each door. They saw mostly children, kept in groups, huddled together like animals in each room. In a few others they saw what looked like small arenas and what looked like horrible pits full of spikes.
This was where the children’s spirits were slowly broken and they were corrupted as well as the power source for the base. The children in each cell would start screaming for help as soon as they saw the officers by the window, but sadly the officers had to leave them for now.
Michelle eventually stumbled upon what she was sure was the power source. In this room, all she could see was a large, square, metallic object in the middle of the room, but there were was small slit that ran all the way around it near the top, from which a green light shone.
Several of the officers started to ram the door to break it down, but unfortunately at the other end of the third floor, several Soldiers began to appear out of pufts of blue smoke. The monsters quickly grabbed another three officers who they tore to pieces in a matter of seconds.
Fortunately the other officers, including both Michelle and Cushing managed to break down the door and make their way into the room.
Unfortunately however ten more Soldiers suddenly materialised in front of them. The room, being the most vital in the castle had the most advanced security system.
The police were completely surrounded, so they decided it would be better to go down fighting. Of course it really made no difference as the Soldiers just tore the police apart. Michelle and Detective Cushing were soon the last two left standing, and were both backed against a wall by the Soldiers. They weren’t scared for themselves. Neither particularly feared death, but they didn’t want to get this far and not help the children.
Cushing wracked his brains for a solution and finally he found it. Grabbing the last of the liquid that Carlene had left with Michelle, Cushing poured some of it on some bullets that he had emptied from his hand gun. Loading them back into the gun he then fired at one of the Soldiers in the head, killing it instantly.
“It worked” Cushing shouted. He hoped to fire the bullet at the Soldiers power source, but sadly however as he took aim one of the monsters suddenly materialised behind Cushing. It grabbed his arm which broke it instantly causing him to drop the gun.
Michelle instantly reached for the gun and managed to grab it. It only had five bullets left and there were 9 Soldiers surrounding her and blocking the power source. The Soldiers weren’t even paying attention to Cushing who was now lying on the ground, passed out from the pain.
One of the Soldiers spoke “You can’t kill us all with that weapon. Surrender now and your death will be quick.”
Michelle didn’t listen. If I’m going down I’m taking as many of those bastards with me as I can she thought to herself. Michelle shot the Soldier that had given her the ultimatum first right in the head and emptied 3 of her bullets into another 3 of the monsters before the surviving 5 Soldiers managed to pounce on and instantly overpower Michelle.
Two of the monsters grabbed her arms, whilst another two grabbed her by the legs. Another stood over Michelle and barked.
“Pull her apart slowly. Let this worm know that we are not to be triffled with.”
The Soldiers started pulling on either side of Michelle with only an ounce of their strength, though it was still greater than anything Michelle had ever experience before.
She already felt like her spine was snapping and she screamed out in agony. She did all she could to try and pull free from the monsters but it was no use.
Just as all seemed lost however, suddenly one of the monsters holding Michelle’s arms screamed and fell to the floor. The other three dropped Michelle to the ground and instantly turned around. As Michelle looked up she could see a figure standing over the body of the Soldier. Carlene.
Carlene looked really beaten up. She was covered in blood, both her own and that of the Soldiers.
Carlene had been able to escape from the Soldiers who were beating her by grabbing one of the Soldiers and pulling him on top of her. She then used him to ram into the other two who were still kicking her, and pushed all three into a wall.
Wasting no time, Carlene quickly grabbed the knife from where she had dropped it and threw another gas bomb from her beehive in front of the monsters which distracted them long enough for the Vampire to slip away. Carlene then used another gas bomb to slip past the Soldiers on the 4th floor before making it to the third.
She arrived just in time to kill one of the Soldiers that was slowly ripping Michelle in half by stabbing it in the neck from behind.
Now the remaining four Soldiers attention turned to the Vampire. Carlene looked as though she could barely stand. Even with her Vampiric healing and constitution, she had taken such a beating that every movement looked like it was a struggle to her.
Still using her last ounce of strength Carlene ran at the Soldiers, who in response charged into her. However it was a trick. The Soldiers thought Carlene, much like Michelle was going to try and go down fighting in a futile last stand, but instead, Carlene quickly jumped over the Soldiers, just before she would have collided with them.
Carlene wasn’t quite as weak as she had made out to her enemies. Whilst still in the air Carlene threw the knife, stained with liquid at the green slit of the power source. One of the Soldiers ran to try and catch the knife (the others foolishly were still focused on Carlene.)
He almost caught it, but fortunately Michelle shot him dead with the last bullet.
The knife penetrated the green slit. For a few minutes nothing seemed to happen. The Soldiers grabbed Carlene and started to beat her. Though she fought back, again it made no difference.
Just then however the Soldiers started to faint. Michelle could see their skin begin to crackle and boil as they lay helplessly on the ground. Carlene managed to hold out for a few seconds longer. Though her breed of Vampire was nowhere near as strong as the Soldiers, the fact that Vampires were undead gave them a slightly greater resilience than other breeds of Demons to certain magics and poisons.
However the liquid was so strong that ultimately Carlene began to succumb too. She collapsed to the floor, just like the Soldiers. With all her strength she was barely able to even lift her arm. The liquid was in the air now. It spread even faster than Carlene had hoped and she knew there was now no chance for her. She just hoped it would be quick.
Just then however help came from the most unlikely of places. Michelle, Carlene’s former rival picked the Vampire up off the ground and struggled to carry her out of the room. Michelle was still in tremendous pain from what the Soldiers had done to her.
Yet here she was going through it to help a Vampire of all things. If Michelle had actually stopped and thought about what she was doing, she probably would have thrown Carlene onto the ground in shock, but luckily for the Vampire, Michelle was working on instinct rather than prejudice.
Carlene had just saved her from an agonising death, and so Michelle wanted to repay the favour. She knew that she wouldn’t be able to get Carlene to the bottom floor in time. Even if she wasn’t barely able to walk from the pain in her back, but still she couldn’t just watch Carlene die.
As Michelle made her way into the hall she could see one of the doors to the cells had been ripped off its hinges. Clearly one of the Soldiers had escaped into here but why? Was there a safe spot she could maybe get Carlene into?
When she went to investigate, Michelle could see one of the Soldiers lying on the floor of the cell, its body beginning to rot just like all the others.
Some of the children had rushed towards the dying brute and started kicking and spitting on it. The monsters had corrupted these children into monsters themselves, and now they were feeling the brunt of it.
Michelle could see at the back of the cell was a window. The Soldiers had placed it in here as a form of torment for the children. The children could see the outside world, knowing that they would never be a part of it again. They’d never be able to walk among their own people, see their loved ones or just be a normal human again.
Clearly the Soldier had hoped to smash it and escape out of the window, but he had fallen before he got a chance. Michelle dropped Carlene who had now completely blacked out on the floor and started hitting the window furiously with her pistol. The window was strong, and Michelle was still weak from the chronic pain in her back, but she simply didn’t give up and after just a few furious hits from her gun the entire window shattered to bits.
She then rushed to Carlene’s aid and threw the Vampire out of the window.
Carlene plummeted to the ground. Normally her Vampire constitution would have enabled her to easily survive, but she was so weak now, Michelle wasn’t sure. Still she knew that Carlene had no chance in the castle.
Carlene broke her arm in the fall, but fortunately she had enough strength to survive, and within a matter of minutes the effects of the liquid began to wear off.
Her strength started to slowly return, her arm even began to heal and within another few minutes the Vampire was back on her feet again much to Michelle’s relief.
The Soldiers meanwhile, being too weak to crawl out themselves, and with no one wanting to help them, had all crumbled into nothing but ashes throughout the castle.
They had done it. The children were safe, but at a terrible cost. All of the police who had entered the castle had been killed except for Cushing and Michelle. At least a quarter of the entire police force had been killed by the Soldiers. Needless to say this didn’t exactly endear Carlene to the rest of the police, and things in the city would be even harder from this point on with a reduced force.
Michelle and Carlene’s relationship had improved slightly however. In spite of everything they had been through, Michelle still couldn’t exactly get over her hatred of Vampires just like that. Still at the very least Michelle wouldn’t violently attack Carlene every time she saw her from this point on.
Many of the children were left broken by the experience. Those who had been partially turned into monsters, were turned back into humans as the liquid burned all of the Demonic essence out of them.
Now however they could feel empathy and guilt again and in some cases, after what they had done it was enough to destroy them. Julia in particular would struggle with the memory of what she had done to her beloved pet for many years to come. It didn’t break her however.
Instead Julia became determined to find out who and what exactly were these creatures. The police had given an official cover story (though even then most of the people of Darrow knew better.) Still Julia didn’t buy it and much like Detective Cushing had done many years prior as a boy, Julia would soon devote herself to finding out as much as she could about the paranormal.
Carlene meanwhile though obviously sad at the huge loss of life in bringing down the Soldiers, did not regret taking them on. Not only had all of the children been rescued, but in tracking the monsters down Carlene had proven her theory of there being one Demon that ruled the streets of Darrow correct.
Now she just had to find out what it was.