Dinner With A Vampire. Did I Mention I'm Vegetarian? (Chapter 8)
I staggered out of the bathroom, shaken, my pride wounded. I had vowed to myself that I would never cry, not in front of them.
I thought I had forgotten how to cry. I thought I was stronger.
Four years. I had not cried in four years. Not since...
I shook my head. Don't even think about it I told myself. Dwelling on the past only makes the future seem bleaker.
I needed to get away from them. I had to escape from all the atrocities they had committed, lose myself in something. But what? And then it hit me. I would lose myself in this place. Man, it was big enough. I would just go exploring, like I had planned.
I walked in the opposite direction to the kitchen, and found myself back in the living room. I took the door back to the entrance hall, and stopped, choosing where to go. I took the stairs, deciding to start with the upper floors. I started with the corridor my bedroom was on, and went from there. My bedroom was surprisingly near the stairs, perhaps one of the nearest. Beyond the corridor I had already explored were an expanse of bedrooms, all empty, unlived in. I found two large rooms, more like apartments that actually looked like they were inhabited, but not recently.
I lost myself in the maze of corridors, amazed as I turned every corner and found some famous piece of artwork, or valuable sculpture. They had millions of pounds here, locked up in, well... stuff.
Despite the wealth, it wasn't a welcoming place. It was dark and gloomy, exactly what a young Victorian heroine would find in some gothic novel, whilst swooning over her Mr Darcy. Every hall had its dark place, perfect to be ambushed in, constantly reminding me of exactly who lived here. I gave a shudder as that thought passed my mind. Even the gothic stone windows let in little light. Okay, so maybe it would have helped if it was sunny.
I found another set of stairs and climbed them. Here I found yet more empty rooms, and if it is even possible, this floor was even gloomier! There were few windows, and the walls, unlike the floor below which were wood panelled, and even more different from the ground floor, which was entirely white marble, were painted a dark, bloody red.
Halfway around, I came across a large wooden door. All the way down were large claw marks, gouged out by I don't want to know what. The brass doorknob was faded, and smeared after hundreds of years of use. Something drew me to the door, inviting me to take a quick peek. I placed my hand on the doorknob, and was about to turn it... But just as my skin brushed the metal, I felt something cold on the back of my neck. The hairs on the back of my neck immediately stood on end, and I knew I was not alone.
I stood perfectly still, too scared to move. My hand was paralyzed, unable to move from the doorknob. Something icy, icy cold was tickling my delicate skin, tantalizing the hairs. It felt like... like someone was breathing on me.
"Do not go in there." A hoarse voice rasped in my ear. It was ancient, tinted by time, but still it was deep, seductive, alluring me into becoming its next victim.
I jerked my head around, sure someone was there. But there was nothing. I wrenched my head around, looking for the source of the voice. Nothing.
I summoned my courage and spoke. "Who's there?"
"Someone you do not wish to anger," the voice taunted, behind me again. I could feel his, (for it was definitely a he) breath on the back of my neck again, and I stood there, petrified of this unknown danger.
"Now go, you frail creature, before you find things that you do not wish to see." His voice said with clear authority that I did not dare disobey. Wordlessly I scampered backwards, and sprinted away. I didn't know where I was going, I just kept running. I got more and more lost, but no way was I going near that door again. Eventually I stopped, doubled over, trying to catch my breath. I was in a brightly painted corridor, the walls white, and the doors less grand. All in all, it was quite plain. Servants quarters?
"'Scuse me miss, but are you okay?"
I jerked my head up, startled at this new voice. Hey, what can I say, I was totally spooked, and real jumpy.
"Oh, sorry, I didn't mean to scare 'ya." The voice said, in a heavy cockney accent. It came from a young girl, not much older than me by the looks of her, dressed in a plain black dress and maid's bonnet. She had a kind face, her mousy blonde hair framing her rosy cheeks. She would be quite stunning, if it was not for the scars of hard work that adorned her face.