Prologue 9: Maeko

With the release of Heart of the Raven looming, it’s time to meet the characters! But why just read a stale bio, when you can have a flash-fiction introduction? These take place the day before Heart of the Raven begins. Think of them as mini prologues. They will not appear in the book and this is the only place you can read them. Enjoy!

maeko

January 10th
Maeko’s apartment
Japan

Maeko hung up the phone and composed her features before she turned around. Hikaru leaned against the doorframe. His dark hair fell past his shoulders and his deep brown eyes watched her, as if trying to see into her mind. She purposefully shielded her thoughts and saw his lips twitch with concern.

She covered her mouth, but was too late to stop the giggle. “You look worried, Hikaru-chan! But there’s nothing to be worried about.  The arrangements are all made and our guests will be here soon.”

He nodded his head, a short, quick motion. “Hai.”

She rubbed her hands together as she looked around the spacious living room. “I believe this den will suffice. We should stock some extra blood, perhaps?”

He nodded again and left on the errand. They both knew it could wait, but it was an excuse to let her be alone with her thoughts.

A doll with pink hair sat in a nearby chair. She sported a black ruffled dress and painted vampire fangs.  Maeko picked her up and smiled into the tiny plastic face. “He’s coming,” she whispered. “Do you know how long it has been since I’ve seen him?”

The doll stared back blankly, but Maeko carried on as if it had spoken. “It was a long time ago. Hikaru-chan was still human then. It was a long trip but he served me well. That’s when I decided I’d turn him later. He was too young then, you see Aimi-chan. I had to wait for him to grow up a little bit more. There’s no point in two of us that look like children.”

That she looked no older than fourteen was a limitation she accepted. Each person in the world had some imperfection or some obstacle to overcome and that was hers. There were many worse ones, so she was lucky. Appearing like a child was inconvenient, but so long as she kept someone with her who could pass for an older brother, the social conventions were met and no one paid her any mind.

She giggled and sat the doll in the chair again. “You’ll like him, Aimi-chan. I’m sure you will. He’s quiet, like Hikaru-chan, but he’s older; much older.” She frowned suddenly. “The last time I saw him he was so angry! Not at me, but…” she trailed off and rubbed her chin. “You don’t think he is still that way, do you, Aimi-chan? He would be… better now?”

The doll didn’t answer and with a sigh Maeko turned to the full length windows. The lights of the city twinkled back at her, telling silent stories of those who sheltered in their beams from the ever pressing blackness of night. Each light illuminated a tiny stage where people acted out scenes of love, lust, betrayal, anger or loneliness. The lights in her own living room shone back, sharing her tale with the world. She couldn’t help but wonder just what kind of story they told.

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Prologue 8: Malick

With the release of Heart of the Raven looming, it’s time to meet the characters! But why just read a stale bio, when you can have a flash-fiction introduction? These take place the day before Heart of the Raven begins. Think of them as mini prologues. They will not appear in the book and this is the only place you can read them. Enjoy!

malick

January 10th
Malick’s new headquarters

Malick motioned to the left and with a grunt Senya and Greneth heaved the fountain to its new position. The ancient master surveyed the effect, then nodded his approval.

Senya straightened and glared around the room. Lush green plants and stone statues looked back at her. The shabby building almost appeared habitable.

“More than habitable,” Malick commented to her thoughts. “For now this will be our new home, our palace! And a palace we will make it.” He clapped his hands and an assortment of guards, still wearing the old black and silver uniforms of the Guild, hurried inside.  As if commanded, they quickly arranged themselves before their master.

Malick surveyed them and smiled. “Ah, my faithful children! It saddens me that so few of you have come, but those that have warm my heart as you cannot imagine!” He motioned Senya and Greneth to the fore. “Before, we had a group of the elite; the best, my Executioners. So we shall do so again but you will not be my Executioners, rather you will be my avenging angels. All of you have chosen to follow me, and so all of you will be the foundation of our new world. Griselda!”

The blonde vampiress marched into the room bearing a large wooden chest. She sat it in the center of the floor and opened the lid. Inside was what looked like folded black cloth and small red boxes.

Malick motioned the group to the chest where Griselda handed them each a stack of cloth and a box. The cloth shook out to be long black coats, emblazoned with a golden eye on the back, and in the boxes were matching golden medallions. It was Malick’s former symbol, the one he’d used before he’d organized The Guild. It was the all-seeing eye, the same as he had tattooed on his back.

“Wear them with pride, my children!” At his command the guards peeled off their Guild issued coats and slid into their new ones. Malick sat back in his chair and watched them fasten the emblems around their throats. Things were progressing just as they should with one exception: his son. But, he would see him in a few days and then… then perhaps he could persuade him to join them. And if not, at least he would discover the hiding place.

Either way, things were shaping up to be quite interesting indeed.

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Prologue 7: Verchiel

With the release of Heart of the Raven looming, it’s time to meet the characters! But why just read a stale bio, when you can have a flash-fiction introduction? These take place the day before Heart of the Raven begins. Think of them as mini prologues. They will not appear in the book and this is the only place you can read them. Enjoy!

verchiel

January 10th
The High Council Chambers
The Vampire Citadel
Iowa

Verchiel whistled to himself as he walked through the empty audience chamber. It was getting late; the sun would be up soon, and he’d had a long day already. There were still a lot of repairs to make and the Executioners and Greater Guards had been put in charge of overseeing them. Though he had to admire Oren’s style – the explosions had created a brilliant distraction and plenty of damage – he didn’t have to enjoy cleaning up after it.

At the back of the room was a secret door, hidden in the paneling. He knocked and it opened to reveal a long table ringed in chairs. Eileifr, the new leader of The Guild, sat at the head of the table. His long blond hair fell around his shoulders, intermingled with braids. He had the air of a weary Nordic king.

Verchiel bowed. “You sent for me, Master?”

Eileifr nodded. Though he didn’t have the power to read thoughts, Verchiel could feel him scrutinizing him. He wondered if the silent inquiry came away with anything.

“We’ve been in contact with the True Council in Munich. They’ve asked us to send a pair of Executioners to testify about what happened here.”

Verchiel suppressed a grin. “You’re sending me?”

“That was a consideration, yes. But, at this time, only a consideration. Jamie is another likely candidate, one that outranks you. However, you were in the atrium with us when Malick made his exit, so your testimony might be of more value.”

Verchiel clasped his hands behind his back respectfully, though his eyes danced. “Yes, of course.”

“However, I need to be convinced that you and Jorick can work together.” He held up his hand as if to silence the other. “I know about your… differences, and they concern me only so far as your work is concerned, do you understand? If you are sent, I expect you to conduct yourself with the decorum and professionalism of one who is representing The Guild.”

Verchiel bowed his head. “Yes, Master. Of course.”

“Good. The… network is still down, from what I understand, but as soon as it is operational again we will generate the necessary paperwork for a trip to Germany. Assuming we decide to send you, that is.”

“Of course, Master.”

Eileifr made an appraising noise that sounded like “hmmmm.” He looked on the point of speaking further when a knock sounded on the door and he instead called, “Enter.”

Ark strode through the doorway, his long black coat swooshing behind him and a stack of paperwork in his hand. He glanced at Verchiel and then directed his attention to Eileifr. “The Executioner applications, Master.”

Eileifr took the stack and dropped it on the table in front of him. “Very good. Thank you, Ark.” He turned to Verchiel.  “You may go. And might I suggest that, for the benefit of all, you stay away from both Jorick and his human for the time being?”

Verchiel’s smile was tight and obviously fake. “As you say, Master.”

“Good. I will see you tomorrow. We will have to choose the replacements, and I want everyone’s input.”

Verchiel bowed again, mumbled, “Of course, Master,” and then let himself out. Despite the last minute edict, he was still delighted.  A trip to Munich would be just the thing.

Even with ol’ grumpy boots!

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Prologue 6: Neil

With the release of Heart of the Raven looming, it’s time to meet the characters! But why just read a stale bio, when you can have a flash-fiction introduction? These take place the day before Heart of the Raven begins. Think of them as mini prologues. They will not appear in the book and this is the only place you can read them. Enjoy!

neil

January 10th,
The Guards’ Office
The Vampire Citadel
Iowa

Neil hurried down the corridor, fastening his gray coat as he went. He skidded around a corner and through the doorway of the guards’ office. “Sorry I’m late.”

“Again,” the vampire behind the desk snapped impatiently. “You shouldn’t have taken the extra shifts if it was too much for you.”

“It isn’t like I volunteered to take them forever,” Neil said. “It was just supposed to be while Gerard was on vacation.”

“Well he’s on a permanent vacation now – or a fifty year vacation at the very least.” He signed his name in the book and passed it to Neil. “If you don’t like it you could always put in to be a greater guard. There’s several slots open. Not that you’d get one.”

Neil ground his teeth and turned his attention to the sign in book. It was only when the other guard had left that he looked up. He wasn’t interested in being one of the greater guard and going out on missions with the Executioners. All he wanted to do was sign in for his regular shift, sit at his desk, sign out and collect his paycheck. He didn’t need excitement and adventure.  Gerard was an example of someone who had wanted excitement. He’d wanted promotions; he’d wanted to do something. Well good going, Gerard, because now he had fifty years imprisonment for conspiring to commit multiple murders. That was the sort of thing that happened when you looked for excitement – that is if you lived through it.

Neil dropped into the chair and propped his feet up on the desk. It was getting late. The sun would be up in a few hours and he’d have to sit there, board off his butt, while everyone else slept. Though since the attack the night before last there were others who were stuck awake all night. Heightened security, they called it. As if Malick was going to come back in the daylight to destroy them.

He unconsciously rubbed his head. Thank God he’d missed most of the battle. He’d started out on the front lines with the other lesser guards. He remembered an explosion and pieces of metal and stone flying through the air and then nothing until he woke up in the infirmary. They told him that a piece of shrapnel had gone clear through his forehead, but since it hadn’t pierced his heart he was fine. Others weren’t so lucky. The debacle had cost too many lives, many killed by Malick himself.

Neil still didn’t understand why Malick had turned against his own Guild. He was the one in charge, so technically didn’t that mean he’d revolted against himself? Why? He’d tried to discuss it with his fellows, but their answer was, “He’s a master. What do you expect? Thinking like one of them is above our pay grade.”

But wouldn’t they all be masters someday, too? Assuming they lived long enough.

The door opened and Neil stiffened as the head of the Executioners walked in. Ark was tall, slender and terrifying. His cool green eyes and the medallion around his neck both said he’d happily squash anyone who got in his way.

Neil jumped to his feet and saluted. “Can-can I h-help you?”

“I’m here to collect the Executioner applications.”

Executioner applications? Neil had no idea what he was talking about. “Um, yes, right. Of course. Um, just let me, um, look for them.” He scrambled through the contents of the desk, praying that the papers would materialize.

Ark tapped his foot. “Should I find them myself?”

“N-No,” Neil stuttered. If he could sweat, it would have been pouring down him. They had to be there somewhere – didn’t they? He turned and brushed against a stack of papers. They scattered to the floor in a snow colored avalanche. He collected them hurriedly, but paused when he noticed the word “Executioner” printed on one. It was the applications!

He stacked them as neatly as he could and stood, holding them out like an offering. “Here you are, um, sir.”

Ark snatched them from him and flipped through them. “Yes.” He turned on his heel and strode from the room without so much as a thank you – but there was no reprimand, either.

Neil sank into the chair and glanced to the desk where another stack of paper sat. He picked it up absently and rifled through it. It was – “More applications!” He jumped to his feet, and then he imagined Ark’s cold face and angry eyes. He’d already handed over a pretty big stack. How many applications did they need, anyway?

He looked around the office quickly, checking for observers, and then sidled sideways to the trashcan. The papers slipped from his fingers and he carefully dropped a few blank sheets on top. He mopped his brow from habit rather than need and moved quickly back to the chair. It would all be okay. It wasn’t as if they’d be forced to settle on the wrong candidate or anything. There were probably perfectly good choices among the papers he’d already given them. He was just helping narrow it down a bit.

Right. Just narrowing it down.

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Prologue 5: Oren, Torina, Micah & Loren

With the release of Heart of the Raven looming, it’s time to meet the characters! But why just read a stale bio, when you can have a flash-fiction introduction? These take place the day before Heart of the Raven begins. Think of them as mini prologues. They will not appear in the book and this is the only place you can read them. Enjoy!

oren

January 10th
An old farmhouse
Somewhere in Northern Missouri

The house was old, empty and abandoned. With no electricity and no water. Truthfully, it was no worse than some of the dens Oren and his war coven had stayed in, but he’d been busy then, planning, arranging. He’d been occupied. Now all he had to do was sit and wait.

Oren stiffened as the sound of a car drew closer. He searched for a weapon and, finding nothing in the empty room, dropped into a defensive stance. The note Jorick left at the old den had been too obvious. The Executioners were coming.

The motor cut off and car doors opened. Oren narrowed his eyes and reached out with his mind to find three of them. He pressed further against their mental walls and one of them gave way. It was Loren. Through the teen’s thoughts he could see his companions: the bald, tattooed Micah and his own redheaded sister, Torina.

Oren relaxed. So the note had worked the way Jorick planned. Of course. Everything always worked the way Jorick planned it to.

His irritation disappeared when the door opened and Micah came through it, stomping dirty snow from his boots. Loren followed, and Torina inched her way in behind them, frowning and shaking the muck from her expensive heeled shoes.

Micah’s eyes landed on Oren and he bellowed, “Well look what we found, skulking in the middle of bum fuck nowhere.”

Torina was instantly animated. She pushed past her companions and stormed towards him, her manicured hands in fists. “Where the hell have you been? We thought you were dead!”

“Perhaps it would be better if I was,” Oren muttered, more from habit than conviction. He could see the tears that gathered in the corners of his sister’s eyes and thought about what Jorick had said.

“… Jesslynn is dead, your children are dead, but your sister is alive. If you don’t want to live for yourself then live for her. The time has come for you to pick yourself up from the ashes and start over. You have wallowed enough! Mourn Jesslynn, miss her, long for her even, but do not waste both my time and Torina’s by following her to the grave. Remember what you have left and be grateful for it!”

She raised a hand as though to slap him. Her fingers trembled and then she dropped her hand and shouted, “Don’t you ever do that again or I’ll kill you myself!”

She straightened her shoulders and spun away from him. Her eyes moved around the dark, empty rooms and she shuddered, “I’ve put up with some lousy dens, but this is ridiculous! The war is over! You can’t expect me to keep living in these rat holes! I’m used to better!”

“Who’s a spoiled princess?” Micah asked and snorted. She glared at him and he laughed. “We could go stay at pipsqueak’s house.”

Loren shrugged. “Yeah, I guess.”

Oren debated on whether to include them in his plans or not. He’d planned to take Torina with him, but the other two… Why not? Who else was there? His previous coven, the one he’d managed for years with his wife, was disbanded and scattered. Those that weren’t dead had no intention of returning, and those who were couldn’t. Loren and Micah were idiots to be sure, but they were idiots who’d gleefully joined in the fight, even when those he relied on were less enthusiastic.

He cleared his throat loudly. “Actually, we have some where to go.”

loren-micah-torina

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Prologue 4: Sadihra

With the release of Heart of the Raven looming, it’s time to meet the characters! But why just read a stale bio, when you can have a flash-fiction introduction? These take place the day before Heart of the Raven begins. Think of them as mini prologues. They will not appear in the book and this is the only place you can read them. Enjoy!

sadihra

January 10th
The basement detention center
The Vampire Stronghold
Munich, Germany

(Scharfrichter/Scharfrichterin = Executioners)

Sadihra signed the papers with a flourish and handed the clipboard over. The guard snapped a quick salute. “Thank you, Scharfrichterin.  I will see that the prisoners are assigned cells.”

She returned the salute. “Good. Will there be anything else?”

“No, Scharfrichterin.”

She nodded. “In that case see to your duties.”

He snapped a final salute, which she again returned, and then she strode from the guards’ room and through a series of chambers to a broad marble corridor. She needed to file her report, not that it would take long. It was another assignment that should have been given to someone with less seniority.

She passed the gated doorway that led down to the Kugsankal and tried to ignore the little tremor that ran through her. She could feel the power of the ancients throbbing like a heartbeat, and the hair on the back of her neck stood up. Though she’d never gone through the door, or down the corridors that led to their chambers, she imagined that the sensation only got heavier and more unbearable the closer one got to them.

She slipped into the nearest elevator and quickly pressed the button. As it rose the sensation lessened, though it didn’t disappear. It never disappeared. The will of the ancient council permeated every stone of the stronghold and filtered into every mind.

She looked forward to getting out of there for a while.

The doors swished open and she strode with a purpose to the Scharfrichter office.  The deep emerald carpet and upholstered chairs gave the room a heavy, old fashioned look, like some kind of library. They’d discussed redecorating more than once, but it never came to anything. It would be such a shame to change the “tradition”, or so everyone said.

Hethin leaned against a carved desk and read over a folded piece of paper. The long white hair that fell around his shoulders spoke of an age his face didn’t reflect. His skin was almost as pale, and his eyes were like the icy ponds at Christmas time.

He glanced up at her. “You’re back.”

“Yes, sir.” She saluted the second in command. “I apprehended two, who have been given cells. They’re both quite young.”

“Then it was an easy assignment,” Hethin’s smile looked fake. “The Americans will be arriving in a few days. You were assigned to escort them and then accompany them back to the United States?”

Suspicion blossomed in her eyes. “Yes.”

“There’s been a change of assignment.” Hethin tossed the paper to Sadihra. “You’re to remain here.”

She skimmed the hand written contents, signed by the High Council. Bitter words rose to her tongue, but she held them back. It would do no good to argue. “Thank you, sir.”

The look he gave her was half amusement and half pity. “You’re not missing much. Of course you can still accompany the Americans once they’re here if you wish. We haven’t received confirmation on their identities, except for The Hand of Death.” She didn’t even flinch and he rubbed his chin. “Perhaps he was before your time, yes?”

“I believe so, sir.”

“Then you certainly won’t miss anything.” He made a dismissive gesture. “That’s all. You may go.”

“Thank you, sir.” She gave a quick, half bow and then strode from the office, the note clutched in her fist. She knew why the orders had been changed, and she was going to make sure the one responsible was sorry for it!

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Prologue 3: Sorino & Kai

With the release of Heart of the Raven looming, it’s time to meet the characters! But why just read a stale bio, when you can have a flash-fiction introduction? These take place the day before Heart of the Raven begins. Think of them as mini prologues. They will not appear in the book and this is the only place you can read them. Enjoy!

kai and sorino

January 10th
The sixth floor salon
The Vampire Citadel
 Iowa

Sorino leaned back in his chair and crossed his legs. His gaze flicked over the dark skinned vampire before him. Dreadlocks flecked with beads gave him a bohemian look that his round sunglasses complimented. The agitation on his face seemed out of place.

“-so far no one has been able to locate Malick. I have them working on it, but…”

Sorino waved him to silence. “I’ve told you that you’re wasting your time, Lurid. The best lead on locating the relic is right here in the citadel working as an Executioner.”

“So you keep saying, but we’re no closer to it. The Hand of Death isn’t going to tell you where it is!”

“Of course not, but his pet may.” Unbidden, Sorino’s eyes moved to the teenage boy who sat in a nearby chair, hunched over his laptop. Though his long bangs hid his eyes, Sorino knew they were trained on the screen, absorbed in the video he was watching.

“May. In the meantime Malick might get it!”

Sorino’s attention shifted back to his associate. “I doubt that. If he knew where it was, he’d already have it.”

“Then what about Traven? What’s to stop him? I heard that he’s headed to France.”

“He’s only running home now that the last of his family is dead. I really didn’t see that coming.” His thoughts drifted to the stories he’d heard of the trial. If only he’d gotten to see Traven actually sacrifice his own wife…

Lurid interrupted his thoughts. “You’re too calm. Either you know more than you’re telling or you’re crazy.”

“Then call me crazy.” Sorino swept to his feet and motioned to the boy. “Kai, come.”

Lurid’s eyes narrowed suspiciously. “What are you not telling me?”

“I know only what you know. If you’ll excuse us?” He didn’t wait for a response as he led Kai out of the salon and down the corridor to their room. Though much of the sixth floor had been taken out during the fighting, this end was relatively unharmed. Their original room had been decimated, but the Guild was polite enough to give them a new one and had even offered a free upgrade. The television normally cost extra, and was something Sorino never bothered with on his stays. It wasn’t worth the cost considering the mindless entertainment it offered.

Kai moved silently to the room’s seating area and once again propped his laptop open. Sorino closed the door and leaned against it, mentally scanning the corridor. He could feel Lurid moving outside; pacing up and down. The vampire’s thoughts tumbled back and forth between belief and incredulity. He moved closer to the door, no doubt listening, and then with a final irritated thought he strode away.

When Lurid’s footsteps faded, Sorino pulled a piece of paper from his pocket. He skimmed the contents, nodded to himself, and moved to the phone. The buttons gave soft beeps as he dialed the number, followed by a series of clicks and then a set of staticky rings.

As-salāmu `alayka!

He cut in before the man could go on with his usual long spiel. “This is Sorino. I received your missive and yes, I’m very interested. Of course, I’d have to see it with my own eyes before we could discuss payment.” He glanced to the silent teenage boy. “Expect us in a few days.”

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Prologue 1: Cyprus

With the release of Heart of the Raven looming, it’s time to meet the characters! But why just read a stale bio, when you can have a flash-fiction introduction? These take place the day before Heart of the Raven begins. Think of them as mini prologues. They will not appear in the book and this is the only place you can read them. Enjoy!

cyprus

January 10th
The Guards’ Office
The Vampire Citadel
Iowa

Cyprus sat at a table in the guard’s office, a miniature stack of paperwork in front of him. He held the ink pen over the paper, poised to record the answer to yet another inane question. “What special skills do you possess that would make you an asset to the team?”

He couldn’t take any more. “This is ridiculous!”

A brunette vampiress glared at him from the next chair. “Shhhhhh!”

“Well it is,” he whispered back. “We’re filling out applications, for Christ’s sake!”

“And how else should we do it?” she asked.

He leaned closer to her. “Malick lined up all the eligible candidates, peered into our minds, and made a choice – just like that.” He snapped his fingers. “None of this bureaucratic, red tape nonsense. I miss him already.”

“Malick was insane!” she cried, and then quickly lowered her voice. “That’s why I never tried out before. Now be quiet before they throw us out!”

Cyprus glanced to the main desk where a gray clad guard leaned on his hand, his expression one of boredom. “He doesn’t get paid enough to throw us out. Besides, we’re his superiors.”

“Only just.” She turned back to her application. “Now if you’ll excuse me, I’m trying to get a promotion.”

He fell silent and gave her a long, calculating once-over. If she was a good representation of his competition he should be okay. Her words had no trace of an accent, which meant she was probably born in the US and had lived there her whole life. She couldn’t be more than a couple hundred years old, and she probably didn’t speak any other languages or have as much experience as he did.

That’s right, he told himself. Not to mention that several of the greater guard had disappeared when Malick did, though no one was sure whether they were some of the unidentifiable remains scattered around, or if they’d gone with him. Either way, they were out of the running and, thanks to the confirmed casualties, there were even fewer left to put in for the three vacant Executioner positions.

Cyprus turned back to the paper and reread the question. “What special skills do you possess that would make you an asset to the team?”  What special skills were they looking for? He’d already listed that he was a demon eye on page one, and he’d written about his multilingual abilities under “What languages are you fluent in?”. What else was there? Unless they meant combat skills…

He rubbed his forehead. His guard training in Munich had been more intensive than the American version. Maybe he could use that? But did he really want to bring up his time in Germany?

He brushed aside the memories before they could surface and scribbled in an answer. The rest of the application was equally painful to finish, and by the time he filled in the last space he was alone in the office.  He scrawled his name at the bottom, swearing by signature that all his statements were true, and then strode to the desk.

The guard eyed Cyprus’ black greater guard uniform and took the papers. “Executioner application?”

Cyprus bit back a sarcastic remark. “Obviously.”

“Don’t take it out on me. It wasn’t my idea.” The guard flipped through the pages, as if checking to see that everything was filled out, then he tossed it onto a stack of papers. “They’ll look it over and if you qualify as a candidate you’ll get a message telling you to show up in the audience chamber tomorrow.”

An interview in the audience chamber? What more could they possibly want from him? They had everything except a blood sample! “Who decides whether I ‘qualify’ or not?”

The guard straightened just a little and his eyes shifted nervously. “Ark.”

“I see.” There was nothing else to say. No doubt the head of the Executioners already had his favorites chosen, and Cyprus wouldn’t be one of them. He’d  been on only one assignment with Ark, and it had been over a year ago and so routine that he couldn’t  recall any details from it. If only Migina or Griselda had been in charge, then he might have had a chance.

Except that Griselda left with Malick, remember?

“Is there anything else?”

Cyprus’ spine snapped straight. He smoothed his black uniform and lifted his chin a notch. “No, that will be all.”

He turned on his heel and strode from the office, head high. It looked like he’d be passed over again, but he might have a chance next time. Migina was the fourth one in line to take over and at the rate the Executioners were dying lately, it might not be too long before she was in charge.

Right. Next time.

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  • Tales of the Executioners

    Short stories from the world of Amaranthine; a universe of blood and darkness where vampires don't sparkle and night is eternal. Each is about a member of the Executioners squad; the special vampire "police" force. Members both past and present share stories of assignments, origins, and more.

    Dark, light, love, laughter, death...you never know what you'll find in the shadows.

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  • Joleene Naylor

    Joleene Naylor

    An independent author, freelance artist, and photographer for fun who loves anime, music, and writing. Check out my vampire series Amaranthine at http://JoleeneNaylor.com or drop me a line at Joleene@JoleeneNaylor.com

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