Blood Moon Rising
Youkai fire fox
Buddy read/Editor: Max*the bishie deliverer

This time I’m mistaken for handing you a heart worth breaking... – NickelBack

Seiji grasped onto Raphael’s cotton collar shirt and tangled his foot behind his, sending the older man sprawling against the ground. Seiji came at him again, grabbed for his arm, and slugged him hard, hitting him first in the jaw, then in the stomach. Raphael fell to the floor. Seiji rose from his feet and staggered backwards, waiting for any notions of the Frenchman getting up; satisfied that Raphael was unconscious, he leaped for the door, staggering with his bloody knuckles as he turned the doorknob and threw the door open.

Shu and Shin were already in their subarmors when they came hurtling into Nasuti’s room.

“Nasty!” screamed Shu, running toward her bed.

He came to an immediate halt as he witnessed his surroundings. Empty. All that remained were shreds of glass scattered upon the floor, a broken window, various objects sprawled about the room and torn sheets.

“I’m sorry.”

Shin and Shu turned. Seiji was standing in the doorway. His expression darkened with an unreadable emotion as he looked at them in silence. Shin patted quietly toward his wounded friend, gently laying a hand upon his shoulder.

“Can we go after them? Is there a way to track them?” he whispered. Seiji nodded gloomily. “I know where she sleeps.” He bowed his head and remained in an attitude of frozen stillness, “She’ll bring Nasuti there.”

Shu came behind both of his friends and coughed awkwardly to gain attention. Seiji and Shin turned to see a glazed look of despair began to spread over his face. “How? How did they enter? You…” he breathed in a shaky breath. “You said they couldn’t enter unless we welcomed them to do so.”

“Raphael allowed them in.”

Shu’s mood veered sharply from anguish to anger. “Where is he Seiji? Tell me!”

“Behind me.” He simply answered. Sure enough, Raphael stood motionless outside of the room as Seiji supplied, his clothes winkled and torn, his hair rustled and face bruised.

“You shit!” cursed Shu as he attempted to spur on the older man. However, Seiji’s outstretched hand prevented Shu from attacking. Seiji shook his head and inclined Raphael to listen. “Leave Raphael before my friend forgets the fact that you’re just an innocent man and not the enemy.”

Raphael snarled at the younger men. “Jacqueline informed me to tell you; you would regret this night Gabriel.” With his curt reply, Raphael roughly turned around and dashed down the stairs.

“What the hell are you doing? He’s…he let those freaks in! Those freaks took Nasuti!”

“Raphael is not a vampire…not a creature of Jacqueline’s; not yet.” Seiji said keeping his eye hard on Shu. “He had no control over his actions. Jacqueline tainted him with her blood and probably gave him strict orders to permit those beasts entry. To be honest, Raphael might be the only thing keeping Nasuti alive. He will not let Jacque hurt her. I need that reassurance. It is all we have in hopes that no harm will come to Nasuti.”

She awoke to a dry mouth and stiff hands. Why are my wrists so sore? She thought. Her head throbbed, her throat hurt, her whole body hurt. She flinched when she heard the sounds. Drips of water. She smelled earth, musty and dank. Her wrists felt coldness rubbing against them. It was dark when she pried open her eyes. She was able see better as she focused on the burning torches nailed by brackets and a couple of gigantic candles, which lay upon steel platforms on either side of her.

She tried to pull and shift her hands. Stuck? She could hear a clanking sound when she moved. With effort, she lifted her head and glanced above so she could see what the problem was. What she saw freighted her to the bones, her hands bound together, no …Shackled!

She frantically looked around her surroundings, analyzing her conditions. She imagined from the smell and sounds that she was underground. In a place, she never seen nor heard of before. Objects adorned the room, ancient looking…rustic. Room! She gasped. She did not occupy a room for there were no doors to close of an entrance. Chains from above hanged her wrists captive. She dangled in the middle of the space, her feet scratching against the dirty ground which was accented by an Indonesian rug. A draft chill went through the wide-open room, extinguishing a few candles.

“I am freezing.” She whispered between clenched teeth. Straining though her tangled mass of auburn hair that caped her face, Nasuti tried to peer downward.

MY SHEETS! She was breathless with rage. My beautiful, expensive sheets! She scrunched her nose in disgust. Satin bronze sheets cascaded around her partial naked body, held up by a knot at the base of her neck. Is this some kind of horror toga-party! She tried to wretched her hands from bondage but the effort was futile. Her shackles were centuries old, strong and enormous, engulfing her whole hand in steel. She wanted to scream, wanted to open her mouth and shriek. She knew she was abducted, no question in her mind agued with that notion.

Why? Her mind echoed. She clenched her eyes and took a deep swallow, not permitting fear to erupt from her mouth. Screaming was not going to help anyone, especially her. In fact, shrieking might bring unwanted attention. From experience, Nasuti knew that captors loved it when their prisoners showed fear. Psychopaths believed it was similar to some form of sexual arousal. If Nasuti wanted to scream she would have to bite her tongue…she could hold off. More important than losing her mind she needed to take care of the situation.

Free her hands and escape from… Hell. However, escaping seemed impossible. If she could at least get free from the iron bonds and stay out of harms way maybe the guys would rescue her.

Yeah right! No prince in shining armor in his right mind would ride around a bunch of dead zombies. If by chance, he could exists he is buried ten-feet underground! In addition, I am probably dangling over his mark!

From somewhere near echoed a familiar voice.

“So, you’ve awaken, eh? I apologies for the shackles la beaute` but Jacqueline insisted it was necessary for the time-being.”

“Raphael, I`idiote! What have you done? Help me!” Nasuti demanded. He started walking toward her. His classic features were a sickly pale color and his sandy blond hair was slick back behind his ears. That is not Raphael! She screeched within. His tall framed stood in front of her and he basked in delight. Nasuti instructively kicked at him, not caring what area she could manage to snag. Naturally, he laughed at her attempt. He caught hold her bare foot, preventing her from swinging at him and causing more harm. What is wrong with him! She thought, wincing from his strong hold. Sensually he slid his hand along her calf to her thigh and grasped her roughly behind the waist. He then brought his other bruised hand up to caress her check, softly. “You are really something you know? Something to be desired.”

Shaking her head in disbelief she sputtered, “Raphael, I’m a professor. Nothing is desirable about that. I read boring novels, love wearing baggy clothes, I dislike too much make-up and… I absolutely have no social life. Did I ever tell you I have a bad habit to burp? It is not attractive. I live in a big house all by myself…kind of like an old nag. What’s desirable about that, eh?” She was trying to keep Raphael’s mind busy. She really did not want him getting frisky on her. Whatever is wrong with him it was like a narcotic. Gone bad.

“Did I also mention you’re quite the senical person?” her mocked.

“You are the first.” She gasped when he leaned further into her, planting his face against her exposed neck. “Raphael? Tell me about Jacqueline?” she inquired between breaths.

“Nothing much expects …shall I say ...ah, Jacqueline has an obsession for your dear friend, Seiji Date. They were apparently lovers.” He laughed against her sanative skin. “She desires him as much as she wants him banished. And she will kill him in the end. She did not exactly capture you for nothing. What else could she want-“

“A mere snack!” Nasuti shouted. “She loves blood Ralph, she is a vampire! That’s what they do. FEED! I have just as much as a chance of surviving this as you do. And that’s slim to none!”

“Nonsense.” He argued. He smiled and forced her head back. Shaking his head, he repeated. “Nonsense…” and slowly bent his head and delicately started to lick her lips.

“Wanted…,” he purred against her mouth. “Desirable…” he whispered, demanding a response from her lips as he tried to deepen the kiss.

"Get your awful hands off me! You are not Ralph!” She hammered a blow with her knee in his groin, chains screeching and clanking with the effort. Startled he doubled over, howling in pain.

Among other emotions was a deep sense of shame. Sorry Raphael... she muttered to his conscious.

“Why did it have to be a graveyard of all places?” Shu grumbled trenching over the moist turf. He wrinkled his nose as he passed an old tomb slab. “Typical. Talk about your retro-1960 horror films. All we need is some cannibals, some bitchy ugly dudes and one horny chick. One blood bath coming up.”

“Shu, you aren’t helping.” Shin warned in a weary tone.

Seiji grimaced. “He’s right though. If we had those elements it would be a bad horror film.”

“For Samurai’s on a rescue search, we’re not very serious.” Shin snapped.

“Shin, how in Kami’s name can you be serious with vampires? Until yesterday, we did not even know they existed.” Shu shot back.

“You do now.” Seiji silently replied. “So let us stay to the task and keep an eye out. We are close to the tunnel.”

"Tunnel?” exasperated Shu. “I knew something was missing.” He added dryly.

"Jacqueline required an ancient burial site of old warriors from the Mejia-era. It is a gigantic empty tomb with enough room to occupy one hundred men or more. The underground housing is hidden from sunlight and far away from civilization-“

Shin interrupted “You are not helping either.”

“Sumimasen.” Seiji bowed his head. Shin returned the bow as an acceptance of an apology.

“Seiji, how come you haven’t sub-armored up like Shu and I?”

“Seiji?” Shin repeated again after he herd no response. He turned wanting an explanation but instead found that Seiji had stopped. Shin alerted for Shu to halt as well, confusion was evident on both of the warrior’s faces.

“We’re here.” Seiji’s eyes suddenly took on an icy and unresponsive glare. A rising mound of earth appeared out from the ruins of graves, cast in the moonlight. Cleary the mound was a tunnel that leads to an underground burial for you could sense the decay and the sticky warmth of the entrance. Fog swirled around the gargoyles and winged angles of the graveyard, statues seeming to leap from life.

Inhaling a deep breath, Seiji began to tug on his black blazer, striping down to his vanilla collared shirt and rolling his sleeves, tugging the heavy wrinkled and sweaty edges from out of his trousers. Tilting his brow, he addressed his comrades. “We have to go in,” He inclined his head toward the entrance. “I am not exactly knowledgeable about the passages in the tunnel; finding Nasuti and Raphael might prove to be difficult and time consuming. Who knows how many nightwalkers we will come upon? So, I proclaim we have a plan before charging in empty handed.” Throwing his jacket to the ground, he strode toward Shin and Shu. “Any ideas?”

“Eh, isn’t that your place Seiji? Coming up with the original plans?” inquired Shu.

"You may not like my idea…I was hoping that maybe one of you had a better solution?”

Groaning, Shu exclaimed, “Seiji, I can already tell you I don’t like your idea without hearing it. Unfortunately, I also know in the end we are going for your suggestion. So, save us the time and spit it out.” Seiji tightened his mouth into a grim line as Shin agreed with Shu.

Great…now I have to think up a plan. He thought wryly, dreading what was yet to come.

Groggily Nasuti opened her reluctant eyes, wincing from pain. Her tongue felt like sandpaper, her body cold and cramped. Apparently, she dozed off after Raphael had left.

“I hear that you and the Frenchman ran into some difficulty.” greeted a husky voice,

“Didn’t anyone ever tell you it’s rude to hit boys like that?”

Nasuti stared at the petite woman with wide eyes, glazed with panic, disbelieving that all of this terror was real. Jacqueline smiled-a demanding smile, come-hither smile… Suddenly she was right in front of her in a flowing gown of crimson silk. Her hair fell over her shoulders and past her small waist like a river of silver.

“Shh…shh…I bring no harm; yet.” Lifting one hand Jacqueline fingered a loose tendril from Nasuti’s face. “I come for, ah… an answer.”

Too freighted too speak Nasuti could only manage a nod. Jacqueline cocked her head to the side as she lifted her pale hand toward the darken shadows. Then with the wave of a hand, five men clad in dark colors appeared from the shadows. They were tall, appeared strong and had wide shoulders; there was a sense of dark secrets behind their faces.

“Loosen the shackles…,” she commanded. One of the men bowed and strode toward the other side of the room to some form of wooden equipment; he pulled with ease on what looked like a level. Nasuti heard the chains rattle and clank, then found her body propelled to the floor with a slam. Nasuti slowly rose from the ground, barley able to stand straight without gasping from her soar body. It took every ounce of her strength to stand tall, hands still bond but no longer held captive above her head.

“Do you know why you’re here?”

“I can only imagine I’m here to lure my friends.” She spoke in a soft whisper, her mind languid, without hope.

Jacqueline smiled comfortably to herself. “You could say that’s one reason…,” she laughed scornfully. “The other, eh…is something I’m afraid would make you weak to the stomach if I told you.” Nasuti nodded, as though she had expected Jacqueline’s answer.

“Tell me the truth, carra, for I will know if you deceive me. Do you have any affection in your heart for Seiji?”

Nasuti shook her head violently, “No.”

Jacqueline thinned her lips into a slim smile. “I love it when humans lie. It makes the heart beat more strongly. The blood rushes faster through the veins.” She licked her lips. Smiled again. Her fangs glittered in the light. She drew away for a moment; then, she came to stand at Nasuti’s side, bringing her hand to her shoulder where she let it rest. Nasuti flinched; Jacqueline smiled viscously. “Answer my question truthfully. I want to hear you say it.”

"I did answer. I told you the-Ahhhhhhhhh!” Nasuti crumpled to the floor, holding her bloody shoulder. Jacqueline had torn her flesh with her sharp razor like fingernails. Licking the blood from her hand Jacqueline demanded once more, “Tell me!”

Nasuti bit her lip, drawing blood from the grip, refusing to answer. Gulping hard she allowed warm tears to slip down her checks. Jacqueline knelt in front of the wounded woman. “You’re stubborn, aren’t you?”

“Go to hell!” Spat Nasuti.

She threw her head back and laughed. “Cara, you are in Hell.” Extending her hand, she gripped Nasuti’s throat tightly. “Now, say it or I’ll rip your throat.”

“Let her be!” hollered Raphael who decided to grace the area with his presence. “You promised me you would not hurt her and I expect you to stay true to that bargen or else.” He threatened between clenched teeth.

“Fool…” Jacqueline muttered softly so he would not hear her. Dragging her hand along Nasuti’s neck scratched out claw marks on her pale skin. Nasuti flinched, but withheld from crying out in fear Raphael would try to protect her and ultimately, end up getting himself killed.

“Eh, so I did Frenchman. Well, wouldn’t want to upset you, now would I?” she answered, spacing the words coldly. She turned to the curled-up woman who silently cried and whispered to her so no one would hear. “Tell me the truth or I will tear into that man’s throat. Slowly…. painfully. You will hear his cries and hear his final breath as I devour every ounce of his blood.”

Chocking on her tears she challenged. “And if I did care, what then?”

Jacqueline stepped back, her gaze intense, and Nasuti wondered if she could sense the depths of her revulsion. “So, lady, you would mock me?” her voice even and calm, “Did you hear her answer Frenchman?” Turning she smiled triumphantly as she witnessed the sorrow and anger that weighed upon his face. “Ewww…I don’t think he liked your answer dear.” Jacqueline sarcastically dropped her head as she pretended to feel sorry. “Not at all…You broke his, eh, strong heart.” She snorted.

Immediately he tuned away, scoffing dirt from his feet and left without a word except for a mere oath. Grieve stricken Nasuti called to him, her vocal cords scratching as she pleaded. “Ralph! Do not go out there! Come back damn you! Do not leave me…I need you! For God’s sake Ralph!” she broke into tears as she whispered to his vanished figure. “Leave…please…don’t stay…leave.”

Nasuti yelped in pain as Jacqueline stretched her hand and grasped a handful of her hair, propelling her to stand. “Dead men don’t speak…or at least he won’t be able to speak after tonight….” She paused thoughtfully, “Either will you, but I assure you, you will be screeching in horror when I’m threw with you.” She pulled Nasuti’s bounded hands and dug her nail into her flesh so blood would flow freely. Lifting her arm, she bit into her wound. Nasuti screamed as Jacqueline drew from her vein. Lifting her mouth from the arm, she tugged Nasuti forward then threw her against the ground with a load smack.

Wiping the blood from her lips, she commanded the men. “Tighten those chains and hang her high!” Jacqueline glared at the other woman, breathed with a deep rattle, and made noises like spilling lava, slurring the blood in her mouth.

Then she dissolved into the shadows.

The shackles heaved and tugged on Nasuti’s wrists, causing her to screech in pain as the chain pulled her up. She dangled once again over the Indonesian carpet. The men vanished into mist expect for one. He stood still in his European outfit with an indigo-collared shirt, adored with ruffles cascading from his sleeves and the V-neck of his jacket. He had burnished blond hair that flowed past his shoulders, tied back with an indigo ribbon. His teal eyes reflected deep concern for the woman. Shaking his head, he turned.

“Akash’s child has forgotten the rules of our clan.” He muttered in a rich European accent.

Nasuti felt drained, hollow, and lifeless. Her throat would not even permit her to cry, it took too much effort to allow tears. She contemplated on her situation for a while. Accepting this would be her fate. Death. She prayed that if she must die than to allow Raphael to be spared from the same death. She could not die knowing he too will share her fate. Though she knew deep inside he would not escape and if so she hoped it would be quick. Painless.

Her chains began to shake and rattle again. Heaving her toward the ground, slowly, unlike last time where she was thrown to the floor.

It is time… She closed her eyes as a wave of fear spread through her and knotted into panic.


Song: Andrea Bocelli – Vivo Per lei of the CD track of Romanza 1997.

I have a secret to share with you. *grin* When I write stories I always play a CD for creativity. Andrea Bocellie was the perfect boost I needed. Bocellie, whose voice is more beautiful and clear (and less overblown) than Pavoratti, sings with such wonderful empathy that you cannot help be moved. I thought that track 8 (Vivo Per lei) of Romanza was hunting and perfect for my vampire role. It was a duet and I highly recommend you buy Romanza if you are a big fan of his work. Seems a little odd that I would incorporate NickelBack’s song for my intro instead of Andrea’s but I happen to think NickelBack matches my mood whereas Bocellie gives me the creativity booth.

Author’s Notes: Well, that took me awhile to finish chapter VIII. *sigh* I hope it suits your expectations? If you paid close attention to the end, you would have seen that I threw in some of Ann Rice’s ideas. Akasha I plan to do more with her ideas, so please stay tuned. I am not going to steal her plot or anything ^_^, I just plan to kidnap a few characters. (I never will understand the disclaimers…I mean why would someone sue a kid who is not even writing for publicity. *tear drops* I guess some people are just desperate for the cash. *lol*) The European man will not have a big role in the later chapter(s?) but he will contain a VITLE role. Make your assumptions to who he is if you like. *evil laugh*

I will like to appraise all the reviews I received. Nagia, Max, Wildfire’s flame, Angle and Lady Dragon Heart as well as many others. (You gals have stayed with this story for a long time and I just wanted to let you know that I am honored by your generosity.) I do not know how many chapters I will need to finish, but my guess would be one or two.

Ja mata,