Story by Kye, CN Winters, Robert Kidman and Zahir al Daoud
Written by CN Winters, Gelfling21, DragonWriter17, Robert Kidman,
and Zahir al Daoud (additional writing by Dan Joslyn)
Directed, Produced and Sound by CN Winters
Edited by Dragonwriter17
Art Direction by Robert Kidman
Artists - Robert Kidman, Zahir al Daoud, Isis, Mattxxx, and CN Winters
Cover Art by Robert Kidman
Guyana, November 1978
Guyana – Jungle – Morning
A dozen men in uniform inched their way through the jungle. Each had an automatic weapon at the ready and moved carefully. They listened to the faint cries of birds in the distance and the whine of insects, but they themselves said nothing.
Somewhere up ahead, a voice cried out an obscenity in Spanish. They stopped in their tracks, their attention even more on all that surrounded them. The crackle of a walkie-talkie broke the silence.
A man with a lieutenant’s insignia on each collar slung the walkie-talkie from his belt.
"Diaz here. Over."
"They’re dead. Over." The voice on the other end was crisp.
"Who? Jones? Congressman Ryan? Over."
"Everyone. The whole compound. Over."
Next to Diaz, an older man in sergeant’s stripes looked at him, blinking with surprise.
"That’s impossible," the sergeant told Diaz. "By last count there were over 900 people here – men, women, children. Aren’t there any children at least?" he asked Diaz.
Diaz spoke into the walkie-talkie. "What about the group’s children? Any sign of them? Over." The other voice hesitated a moment, and Diaz added, "Do you see any surviving children? Over."
Finally the voice replied. "Them, too. Like I said, everyone. You-you have to come see this for yourself, lieutenant. Over," the voice said as it faltered and shook with emotion.
"We’re on our way. Over."
Now the other soldiers in earshot reacted. Eyes went wide. One opened his mouth in shock as another clenched his jaw. The third appeared to cocoon himself with his arms. None, however, said anything but rather looked at each other with different degrees of shock. Silence went on for what felt like hours. After a few seconds, the entire patrol turned as one to their right toward a clump of trees where someone had just coughed.
Guns raised, they surrounded the clump of trees. Amid the leaves was an open space, almost like a cave made of wood instead of stone. Someone within it groaned. Each member of the patrol tried to see through the dense clots of branches and vines within. There was blood, they could all see that, and two shapes on the ground.
Diaz led the way, pushing past vines into the space. Others followed. Upon the ground were two men. Or one man and something…else. A white-haired man with several days’ growth of beard lay on his side. His clothes were quite filthy but not enough to hide his priest’s collar. He slowly lifted his head and looked at Diaz with dim eyes. His face was a mass of bruises.
"That…box." His voice was barely audible. One finger slowly lifted with great effort and pointed at a box that was held in the hands of the other figure.
Unlike the priest, the second figure was sprawled upon the ground, livid wounds seeping blood onto the ground. One arm looked almost severed. A slash disfigured his demonic looking face. The source of the damage was obvious—a machete imbedded in his lower abdomen.
His face was almost human, but the ears were clearly pointed. Rough, almost scale-like skin surrounded his half opened, red eyes. His mouth was partially open, too, with elongated eyeteeth that looked like fangs, and in his hand was the box. It was just a little smaller than a shoebox, but made of wood. Weird glyphs were carved all over the surface, while a metal clasp held the box shut.
Diaz reached for the box.
"No!" The priest raised his voice, an act that looked impossible from his condition. "Keep closed." Each word seemed forced from his lungs by an act of will. "Forever. Never open. Never."
"Why?" asked Diaz. "What’s inside?"
The priest’s eyes were fading. His lips trembled. The effort to speak made the one word he said seem endless.
The last sound became a rattle in his throat. His head fell against his chest.
One of the soldiers crossed himself. Lieutenant Diaz hesitated, then picked up the box.
"What have we here?" The voice, coming from behind them, was female and in perfect American English.
A blonde woman in her mid-twenties strode confidently into the space without hesitation. With one glance she took in the dead priest and the other dead figure.
"Hmm," she said as she compared the two bodies before them, looking from one to the other and then back again. "From all appearances a Narokic demon I’d say…Interesting. We thought those were extinct."
"We? The CIA, you mean?" asked Diaz.
"Among others." Now she turned her attention to the box. "Maybe this is what they were fighting over." She held out her hand.
"My government will investigate all artifacts found, Dr. Walsh," he said, pulling it slightly closer to himself.
Maggie Walsh’s hand remained out. "That decision has already been made."
"I’ll need confirmation of that from my superior officers." Diaz did not blink.
After a few seconds, she said, "You are wasting time, Lt. Diaz."
"One of us is," was his answer.
The two of them stared at each other and kept staring. Walsh noticed how the other soldiers were subtly positioning themselves closer in support of their lieutenant. She made the smallest of sneers.
"We will," she said, emphasizing the verb, "be taking these two corpses back with us. For identification, among other things."
"Certainly, doctor," he replied. As Walsh turned to leave, Diaz continued. "But the box…" he said, making her turn back, "…that stays with us." The soldiers around him moved their weapons from their shoulders to hold them firmly in their hands.
Seeing she was outnumbered and out-armed, she gave him a nod.
"Very well," Walsh said before she turned and left.
Diaz stared at the box and then at the dead priest. He turned to one of his men.
"Get me a secure container to transport this thing. Something with locks."
"Locks?" the young man asked. Diaz’s only response was a stern look. "Uh, yes, lieutenant. Right away."
The solider scampered away as Diaz looked at the wooden box a moment longer.
He then turned to his sergeant. "Continue your search of the area for any survivors."
The sergeant nodded, and Diaz went back to looking at the box, but following the priest’s warning. He didn’t dare open it.
Cleveland Graveyard – Mausoleum Roof – Night
From atop a squat, stone tomb, a man in all black watched the scene before him with night goggles. He watched one area for a long moment, then shifted his view to another.
Three vampires were attacking one girl, that girl being Kennedy. She held her own pretty easily, avoiding blow after blow while delivering several of her own.
Less than twenty yards away, six vampires were attacking Kadin Van Helsing. She was seriously outnumbered and taking more than a few hits.
The man in black zoomed in on the scene.
Cleveland Graveyard – Same Time
Kadin’s situation was nothing serious until she tripped over a small headstone. At that point, one of the vamps leapt onto her, getting a pile-driver kick in the gut for his troubles. But another vamp swung from a different direction and delivered a kick to the hunter’s head.
Instantly, the other four reacted. They piled onto Kadin, using their weight to pin her down. As she struggled, they began to laugh, until a new growling sound emerged from Kadin.
One vampire screamed as a fist suddenly emerged from the back of her neck. Her scream was cut short as she turned to dust. A second vampire went flying as the same hand reached up and grabbed his skull like a bowling ball and tossed him twelve feet away. Snarling, Kadin tore her way through the vampires still trying to hold her.
Kadin’s face was now demonic, feral beyond belief, and blue. She grabbed the first vampire trying to run away and twisted his head off. A pile of dust settled at her feet.
When she caught the next one, she lifted him up and, with tremendous force, impaled him on a stone cross. He screamed for a short while, then burst into flames, before becoming nothing more than dust. By then she’d reached another vampire, who was throwing things at her—urns, a bench, a garbage can. Kadin swatted them away as she stalked closer.
Cleveland Graveyard – Mausoleum Roof – Same Time
The man in black spoke into the mic on his headset. "Confirmation," he said. "We have confirmation."
Cleveland Graveyard – Same Time
One lone vamp was running like wild for the exit to the cemetery. She almost ran directly into Kennedy, who tripped her.
"Hey," Kennedy said to the vampire sprawled on the ground, "were you making a move on my girlfriend?"
The vampire gasped as Kennedy casually flicked her wrist. With precision and great accuracy, the stake she threw went straight into the vampire’s heart. Kennedy didn’t even wait to see her turn to dust. She jogged toward Kadin, who was morphing back into her usual flesh tone with normal human features.
"You okay?" Kennedy asked over the sound of the vampire exploding behind her.
Kadin nodded slightly. "I wanna call it a night."
"Tired after all that monster-wrecking?"
"Actually…" Kadin grinned. "No. Not tired at all."
Kennedy grinned back.
Cleveland Graveyard – Mausoleum Roof – Same Time
The man in black grinned, too, before sobering and pulling his mic closer.
"Surveillance, go!" he ordered in an urgent whisper.
Kadin’s Cabin – Bedroom – Later
Naked and tangled in a set of ivory colored sheets, Kennedy’s body stretched the length of Kadin. She held the monster hunter’s hands above her, locking them in place as she devoured her neck.
Kadin growled in response and rolled Kennedy over in one fluid movement, pinning her back to the mattress. The slayer smiled for a brief moment before working one hand free and using it to grab the back of Kadin’s head. She pulled the woman down for a passionate kiss.
Again Kennedy rolled Kadin until both women lay side by side. The slayer’s teeth nipped at Kadin’s shoulder while Kadin worked her fingers into Kennedy’s hair, egging her on. Suddenly, Kennedy felt her head pulled back briskly and Kadin’s lips capturing her neck.
She closed her eyes against the onslaught and moaned out in a mix of pain and desire. Kadin released her, and Kennedy lowered her head to look at Kadin. She saw a blue tint coming to Kadin’s skin and felt sharp fingernails begin to scratch her back. Once more Kennedy cried out in a noise that sounded like passion bordering on pain. With even more determination, Kennedy rolled Kadin over as her hips began to roll against her lover.
Kadin’s Cabin – Bedroom – Later
In the shadows, two glistening bodies rolled away from each other. They lay for a moment, panting, on the sweat-soaked sheets.
"That," said Kennedy after several breaths, "was interesting."
Silence. "No one’s ever said that before."
"Well," Kennedy said, "you ever get all blue on anybody else before?"
Kadin blinked. "What? I didn’t."
"Not very much, just some growling, a little fingernail growth. Oh, and your skin went a little smurf-like for a few seconds there."
"You are kidding. You’d better be kidding."
Kennedy said nothing. After a moment, she turned on her side and leaned over. Her tongue traced a bead of sweat on Kadin’s shoulder.
"Hey," she whispered, "I’m not complaining, okay? In fact, it was pretty freakin’ hot."
Kadin still looked worried. "I don’t want to hurt you," she replied.
Kadin moved to rise out of the bed, but Kennedy pulled Kadin back into her arms and tried to calm Kadin’s growing concern.
"I told you. It’s okay. I’m a big girl. I can take care of myself and still have enough strength to take care of you, too."
Kadin looked over to see Kennedy smiling at her, and she began to grin in response. She began to look serious again after a moment. "If I ever…if it gets too…"
"It won’t," Kennedy reassured her.
"You don’t even know what I was going to say," Kadin argued.
"Yes, I do," Kennedy replied. "If you ever get too blue or it gets to out of control, you want me to defend myself, right? Even if that means to the death. Am I close, or did I just hit a bull’s-eye?"
Kadin began to grin again. "Okay, so you do know."
"And like I said," Kennedy told her, pulling Kadin closer. "Don’t worry. It’s all good." Kennedy then gave her a tender kiss.
Kadin closed her eyes and made lazy patterns on Kennedy’s arm with her fingertips.
Kadin’s Cabin – Bedroom – Later That Night
Kadin’s eyes opened, and she turned to see Kennedy fast asleep, her arms still wrapped around her. With a slight grin, Kadin gently extracted herself from the embrace and left the bed.
Kadin’s Cabin – Bathroom – Moments Later
Unblinking, Kadin stared into the mirror. She leaned in, closely examining each eye. Opened her mouth, baring her teeth and examining those. Stepped back, looked at her skin. Then she stared at her hands. Her arms.
Then, she did it again. She took longer this time, pouring over her physical appearance, searching for signs. At the end, she even stuck out her tongue. But in every visible way, she was the same Kadin she’d always been. At last, she simply stared at her image in the mirror for what seemed like several minutes.
She let out a little sigh and picked up the glass next to the sink. After running the water for a short while, she put the glass under it. She turned off the water when the glass was half full and took a few drinks.
Still holding the glass, she reached over to the mirror and opened the medicine cabinet. She froze.
On the middle shelf of the cabinet were three cigar-shaped metal tubes attached to a tiny black box. Built into the box were a sensor and a spray tube, which immediately began to hiss and shoot a solution into her face before she could react.
Unable to speak, her hand gripped the glass so hard that it shattered and fell into the deep sink. She began to stumble, and her bloody hand gripped the sink. She stumbled toward the door but collapsed before she could cross the threshold.
End of Teaser
To Act One