5. Elena's Secret

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"How did you get in here? Who invited you to enter?"

As before, in a blink of an eye Jonathan had crossed the room, his hands tight around the vampire's neck.

For a vampire he was. He must have been in his late twenties or early thirties when he was turned.

He tried to answer but could not get a word out of his mouth. Still, he did not look scared at all. His dark eyes looked straight at me – and the only emotion I could read from them was... depression? Sadness?

"Let him speak," Nana touched Jonathan's shoulder.

Jonathan eased his grip somewhat, but did not let go of him.

"I can kill you right here and now," he hissed to the vampire's face.

"Good," the vampire said without emotion, "I would not mind."

Not exactly the answer I expected to hear from a mythical creature who was supposed to have eternal life. Who would kill people without remorse to achieve that.

Even Jonathan seemed surprised at the answer.

"Who invited you? You could not have entered my house without an invitation." Nana repeated Jonathan's question.

"Well, as it happens to be, there are a few of us who can do just that. Enter any abode without invitation," the vampire said and nodded briefly to my direction, "Or how do you explain her being bitten? She never invited a vampire into her house."

Jonathan's grip around the vampire's throat tightened anew. 

"What do you know about that?"

"Let go, Jonathan, he cannot speak if you throttle him," Orri commented from behind me.

Reluctantly the demon lowered his hands, but did not move away from the vampire. His tall figure towered over the shorter vampire.

"Who are you?" Jonathan demanded to know.

"Vampires never reveal their real name to anyone," Nana said to me like a teacher to a pupil, "If you know their real name – the name they received when turning into vampire, you can keep them at a distance."

"How?"

"That's complicated... If you know their real name they are not to harm you. You need to say it out loud in front of them using a certain formula. But that is not a pleasant experience. Somehow it seems to connect the person saying the name and the vampire in question. They are somehow... aware of each other from then on. And it is not pleasant to be aware of what a vampire is up to 24/7," Nana replied.

"What? Some kind of a spell, you mean? You cannot serious to say that words alone would have such power! Words are just... words!" I shook my head in disbelief.

"Words are never just words ", Nana said, "And some words have more power than others. You should know that."

I opened my mouth to ask what she meant, but did not get the chance to ask.

"Could you have that conversation some other time?" Jonathan asked dryly, "This is more important. So. Who are you?" he asked the vampire again.

"You may call me Tomas," the vampire said and touched his neck with his fingers, "And I have come here to help you," he turned his eyes to me again. Dull, tired eyes. "But there is a price for it."

"Why would we want to help you in any way?" Jonathan's eyes were burning red.

"Oh I do believe you do want to pay my price," Tomas smiled shortly. A joyless smile. "I want you to kill me."

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