Paranormal Collaboration Part One (by Steve Strodder)


I crouch low against the silhouetted shapes of gargoyles on a late gothic building. My leather jacket creaks slightly as I shift my weight stopping an oncoming cramp forming in my left leg. The creak is only very quiet, but to my straining fey ears it sounds sickeningly loud. I check my watch. 12:34 am. Eleven minutes to contact hopefully. Then again my scrying imp has been making more and more mistakes recently. Maybe I should think about replacing the poor old sod.
Later, though. First I have this drug lord vampire to take care of.
It starts to rain, lightly at first, but soon it’s as though the heavens have opened. If the camp doesn’t show that imp is going to be sorry.
Right on the dot of quarter to twelve a movement at the end of the alley catches my eye. I bring my glamour up in a shell, taking on the image of the skyline behind me, making me all but invisible even to the keen eyes of the stalking Undead beneath me. He walks into the shadows around a dumpster and melds with them.
I take off my jacket and quietly lay it on the ledge of the building, the moon’s lunar energy rushing into me. Its light hitting my bare arms re-energises me from the drain of having my shield run continuously for the last five minutes. I shift my weight onto my heels but when the hilts of my knives dig into my ribs I decide to stay in a hunters crouch on the balls of my feet.
Come on Kyle, you undead son of a bitch, I think. Make one wrong move. I’m dying to end your pathetic existence. That cocaine you’ve been bringing into the city has killed a few dozen too many people already. You just tell them it’s cheap, you don’t tell them it’s cheap because it’s eight parts Drano and two parts pure Colombian. Come on Kyle, make my day.
As if answering my prayers, the vampire’s client walks into the alley from the other end with a few roman candles peeking out from his coat. Dealing in illegal magical trinkets, that’s one strike. The fact that they’re illicit magical trinkets that, when in the hand of a master vampire, can level a city block takes strikes two and three. Time to roll out.
I run until I have enough wind rushing past me to gather it up around me in a protective ball and then drop the shield. The movement is picked up by Kyle straight away. At first I don’t bother him. He thinks I’m just another member of the paranormal community going about my night, and because I’m an Aerie Fey, being on the rooftops makes perfect sense.
It’s at this point I push some extra energy into my aura, making it flare in his mind’s eye. Around me it is as if the ground in a two meter radius from my feet is being consecrated by spikes of black ether. I let my true form show and launch myself at him, drawing the knives in midair. Let’s dance, pretty boy.
He repels my attempts to invade his mind. No surprise there; he’s a century older then I am. There is an audible crack when our auras meet, my spikes ripping his spider webs and his spider webs entangling my spikes. I go for a straight, through the heart thrust, just a feint. I follow up with a right slash, left slash, right elbow and aether bolt combo. The slashes draw thin singeing red lines in an X across his chest. He hisses and I see he has let the beast take him completely, making him faster, stronger and sharper, but also making him easy to predict and blinded by his bloodlust. He comes at me, slashing with talons that have sprouted from his fingers. I step back and roll out from underneath a disemboweling swipe. Shit. This guy moves like quicksilver. He will beat me entirely on endurance if I don’t end him soon.
I pull an aether spike from my aura and hurl it at him. It strikes him through the chest, but on the right hand side. Damn. He is winded for a second. I flick my hand and the bolt retreats back to my aura, leaving a gaping hole in his chest. I rush him and brace my right hand with my left, thrusting it straight through his heart. I pull it free and, using the momentum, swing the blade around three hundred and sixty degrees, severing his head. He collapses and a hundred and fifty years of decay catch up to him, reducing his body to dust.
I breath the cleansing prayer of the goddess Aer and my aura glows gold for a second. As the fleeing remains of Kyle’s aura are absorbed into mine, I feel my power grow inside me. I close my eyes and feel my conventional form meld back over me. When I open my eyes again, the supernatural energies of my aura and Kyle’s remaining ashes are just a faint glow.
I turn to the man cowering behind the dumpsters and crack the seals on the candles, rendering them no more than shop candles. I drop them on the ground at his feet and climb back up the fire escape to retrieve my jacket.

Paranormal Collaboration Part One (by Steve Strodder)


Forresters Beach, Australia

  • Artist

Artist's Description

This is by Steve Strodder, not me.

It is part one of a collaboration. I start writing in Part Two. Enjoy!

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