November 02, 2005

Dear journal,

It has been many, many upon many years that I’ve written in your pages. I was a young woman of nineteen when I last wrote anything, so much has happened since then; and I feel that no one truly knows my story. I guess the best place to begin is the last time I wrote in your pages.

Two hundred years is how old I am … yes I’m immortal, a blood drinker; a vampire. I pray upon the living so that I may live. With mortals, it’s hard to comprehend why, but once converted, it becomes as natural as breathing.

My true name is Sage Helen Brooks, but the others call me Widow. I have earned that name over the centuries because of the fact that all of my husbands have died. We vampires do find love, for it is hard to live a life of immortality without feeling lonesome. Rarely do we fall for mortals, because of their short lifespan; and their aversion to the life we live. But it has been known to happen from time to time. Me, I’ve only loved other immortals.

Like I said before, I was nineteen the last time I wrote anything in this book. The year was 1805, and that was the year I met him. The first vampire I met and the one who converted me. It was Halloween and I was watching over my sick mother. My village was plagued with a sickness that even the doctors could not prevent. My father was the first to go, then my little brother. When my mother became ill, I lost all hope for the future. I told myself that once she died, I would join my family shortly after. What was I to do with no home or family? I did not want to live off the street; I had more respect for myself than to allow that to happen to me.

My mother begged me to join in the festivities on that night, for she hoped I would find a husband. I think she knew what I wanted to do after she died, and she knew that I couldn’t do it if I was married. I agreed to go, for that night she seemed well. I will forever regret that decision.

The night started off with a simple meal, where all the families would eat and talk. The children would eagerly eat their meals, all in anticipation for the sweets that would come after. Once that was over, the parents would put the children to bed and dance until the early morning. Quite the pagan thing to do, but the village was small and had only one priest who didn’t see anything wrong, as long as we attended mass every Sunday.

The night seemed to take forever to finish, for I was constantly worried over my mother. Twice I was asked by some local farmer’s son to dance, both times I agreed. I would put on a mask, and pretend to enjoy the dancing. All night though, I felt as if someone was watching me; but every time I looked, no one was looking back. It was nearing the end when a man, asked me to dance. I felt something shake in me; the kind of shaking that happens when something inside you awakens.

“Would you like to dance?” he said to me, in a deep and sensual voice. I was instantly captured by his green eyes, and his magnetic presence. All eyes were on us as we took to the dance floor. Almost flying, we danced as if we had practiced for years.

Once my eyes couldn’t stay up anymore, the man offered to walk me home. The walk seemed too short, for we talked of so many things; of my life in the village, or his travels abroad. I cannot tell you how, even to this day, that once we reached the door of my home, I knew my mother had passed on. With out a word to the stranger, I ran into the house to see if my fears were true. What I saw broke my heart; my mother on her bed, eyes closed and arms by her side, she looked as if she was sleeping. I fell to the floor; the last person whom I loved, had left me. The grief was almost too much to bear, and I shook violently with my sobs.

It felt like an eternity that I had been crying. But then I slowly noticed a presence in the room. No words were spoken, but I reached for the stranger and he held me as I grieved. Once I felt like I had no more tears to cry, he said to me: “There is nothing left for you here, why don’t you come with me?” I nodded in agreement. Because of the exhausted state I was in, the stranger carried me. I had fallen asleep on the way, and by the time we reached his home, which was a castle, it was nearly dawn. He placed me on a giant bed, and said to me that he would return in the evening.

I slept all day, and refused all the food sent to my chamber. I had lost the will to live. Even that evening, I didn’t want to see the stranger; for I knew that if I talked to him, I would not have the courage to do what I wanted to do. It took three days for the stranger to stop knocking at my door. So with the little strength I had, I left the castle. I searched for a way to end my life, and found that the castle was at the top of a mountain; and there was a cliff on the west side of the hill. I reached my destination with great effort, since my body was weak from lack of nutrition, and sat at the edge to look at the fields and forests below. I said to myself that I was only sitting for a short while to say my goodbyes to the world. Then a new grief had come over me; the stranger, for however short our acquaintance had been, it had been beautiful. I felt sad because, if things had been different, we might have gotten a chance at knowing each other better.

Once my final farewells were done, I stood and closed my eyes. I had spread my arms wide, as if I were embracing my death like a lost love. I had felt myself slowly go forward, but just as my feet stopped touching the ground I had been pulled from behind and hurled onto the nearby grass. I was furious at the one who foiled my attempt at suicide. When I saw it was the stranger, I was at a loss for words. I was no longer furious, I was scared. Because he was the one who looked dangerously furious.

“How can one so young, wish to throw her life away!” he yelled at me.

“Because I have nothing to live for! My whole family is dead, and I have no one left!” I screamed back at the stranger. He just looked at me for a moment, and in an instant he was hugging me fiercely.

“You have me.” He said. I didn’t understand what he meant; we had barely known each other for less than a week. When I asked how could he want me after such a short time. He looked at me and said: “I have known you your whole life. I have watched over you and protected you through your many trials in life.”

Many of the things he said didn’t make sense to me. But after a few moments of talking he convinced me to return with him and live with him for as long as I wanted to. As we walked back to the castle I asked for his name. “Braiden.” He replied.

It didn’t take me long to discover what he was; and it took me awhile to adjust, but I had learned to accept. A year went by and we had fallen in love. Things were fine until three days before my 20th birthday. I had come down with the sickness that had killed my family, and it was progressing faster than it had before. Not knowing what else to do, Braiden and I decided to convert me. He had been more adverse to the idea then I was, but I thought that even if I survived the sickness, how would we be able to live together. It would be a half life.

We waited until my birthday, and by then I was hours away from my death. I cannot describe the changes during the conversion, and neither can any other vampire, because it happens while you’re dead. By tradition, the vampire must drain the mortal of all their blood, and replace that with their own. The night after, I woke in a puddle of the vilest excrement that a body can purge. After cleaning myself, I was a child again. The world had colors I had never seen. The night seemed like day. Which also explains why I don’t miss the day. My body was tingling all over. Everything was magnified ten fold: sight, sound, taste, touch, and smell.

Braiden was a good teacher. With him I learned the many things a vampire needed to know. Such as that we can bury ourselves underground in an emergency, or how to properly hunt. My first victim was a man who was in his thirties. He smelled of hay and horses, but his blood tasted like the sweetest desert I’ve ever had. From that day on I was a full fledge vampire. With no regrets of ever changing.

Things went well from then on for about twenty years. Every night I would wake and find my powers even stronger than the night before. We loved each other like young lover should: passionately and affectionately. We would travel across the world, and during our travels we would meet other vampires. There isn’t many of us, but we have a way of finding each other. Contrary to what mortals believe, we are not lone hunters, we are much like mortals, and we seek the company of others like us.

The day my beloved Braiden died I was in Rome visiting friends, while he stayed at our castle. The village that I had come from started to suspect us and raided the castle during the middle of the day. I only found out once I returned and saw that our home had been burned to the ground. Instead of becoming stricken with grief, I became angry. I went to the village and killed all the adult males of the village. I never once allowed myself to believe that Braiden was dead. In my mind he had escaped from the fire and was in hiding.

For almost ten years I searched for him. I think I went mad for a while. Telling myself that he wasn’t dead. My friends looked upon me with pity in their eyes. Not once did I return to our home, for the sight alone would was too much to bear. I was afraid that if I went there, I would come to realize that he was gone forever. But after awhile my madness subsided and I came to my senses. It was time for me to return to our beloved home and face my demons.

The place was only rubble at that point. It was almost hard to imagine that a great castle once resided at the top of that mountain. When I arrived, I knew that he was gone; but his presence was still there, and it brought me comfort. Even today I go there to be close to him at times I feel sad; for he was the first and only one I ever truly and deeply loved.

Afterwards I started my life as a vampire on my own. I started to attend many parties. I met many wonderful people, whom I’m still friends with today. For almost five years I lived the life of a bacherlorette.

Still somewhat raw from the loss of Braiden, I kept my lovers at arms length. It was no different for when I first met Joshua. I had a hard time becoming committed to him, because I feared losing him. I had already started to develop feelings for him, and in my mind I felt as if I would lose him no matter what. But he was persistent, and kept at my side all the time until I finally confessed to loving him.

We lived together for forty years in utter bliss. But we felt like something was missing … a child. Once converted a vampire cannot reproduce in the fashion that mortals do. We create others the way a vampire is made, by conversion. Let me be clear that we do have physical pleasures, but nothing can come of it. So we decided to adopt. Our daughter arrived to us on July 15, 1880 . The child of a prostitute who died during child birth, the doctors said the mother was going to give the child away anyways. We named her Lily. She had auburn hair and hazel eyes. During the day we had nurses take care of her, and at night we would. We waited until she was fifteen to tell her what we were. She did not seem in the least bit phased by it, she said she already knew. We gave her all she needed, love and a proper education. She lacked for nothing. When she was old enough, we offered to change her. She said that it wasn’t in her to do it and that she had met someone who would like to marry her and have children of their own. We couldn’t be more happier for her, but inside I was sad, for I knew I’d lose my baby to death one day.

Lily had only one child with her husband. They named the boy Mathieu. He was a cautious boy, always shy around my husband and I, but he was smart. He could do difficult mathematical calculations at the age of twelve. At sixteen, the boy wanted to become a priest. He felt that the Lord was calling to him. It didn’t take long for him to become obsessed with religion. He believed that anything non-mortal, was created by the devil.

He knew what we were, Joshua and I; and he hated us, Joshua more than me. He thought that Joshua was my creator and that if destroyed, my soul would be freed. Lily and her husband tried to tell him otherwise but he wouldn’t hear of it. I still don’t know how he found us; but one day he crept into our home and murdered my Joshua, with a stake through his heart. I never saw Mathieu again, I head later on that he started a cult and committed suicide five years after he disappeared. My poor Lily was devastated, losing both her father and her son at the same time.

We comforted each other in our time of grief. Lily had a strong will, and recovered after a few years. Always, I would visit her often. Her husband and I would talk of many things during their supper and Lily and I would go shopping. Once during an attack from vampire haters, I came to them weak, and both offered to give me their blood so that I may heal.

In 1940, my Lily died, followed shortly by her husband. Even though she was my daughter, she was the easiest death I’ve dealt with. For I knew her mortality, and that every year I prepared myself for the inevitable. By that time, other vampires started calling me Widow. Not everyone did, but just a few. It wasn’t until I met and killed my next husband Aaron, that the name stuck.

I met him just a few years before Lily died, he was a breath of fresh air. We had so much in common. He wooed me with kind words, and thoughtful acts. We did everything together: attend parties, hunt, etc … He was even there for me during Lily’s’ death.

But as time went by, he started to change. He would act more hostile towards me if I talked to other male vampires. He would even become enraged at the fact that I would take a male victim. I tried to go to the castle for time alone; and when he discovered the history I had with that location, he beat me. Since vampires heal fast, he would keep beating me. I tried to escape, but he always found me. This went on for almost ten years.

I couldn’t go on with that anymore. So once I escaped, I found a man, and paid him to trap Aaron using metal bars that were coated with oil and set aflame. So during the day my man trapped Aaron exactly the way I specified. I will spare you the details of what I did to Aaron, but I will tell you that his death was not swift nor painless.

Nobody in the vampire community blamed me for what I did. But from then on I was no longer Sage, I was Widow. Perhaps Sage did die on those cliffs, or after Braiden died. I’m no longer sure.

So I continued my life living though the sixties, the seventies and so on. I hunted and I partied with my many friends. I nearly found love again, but it didn’t last. Many young vampires don’t even know that my real name is Sage, or why I’m even called Widow. They don’t know about Braiden, Joshua, Lily, Mathieu, or even Aaron. To them I’m just an old vampire, with just a common vampire tale. Maybe they’re right, maybe my story is no different then that of any other vampire that has ever lived more than a century.

Either way, I’ll know that someone will read this story one day and know about Sage “Widow” Helen Brooks.



Ottawa, Canada

  • Artist

Artist's Description

The tale of a vampiresses taken from her journal. Of her creation, her life as a vampire; and the many loves she had



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