This is my first short story on this website, and I plan to continue it up to at least 20-30 instalments.
Note: may contain Adult content, not for young readers.
The world in which my stories is set is an alternate world where modern day religions exist, in other words the cities and locations are pure fiction. Enjoy.
WAKING UP DEAD
CHAPTER ONE: KINDNESS OF A HUNTER
The church was a huge room decorated with a red carpet running through the long row of pews and giant stained glass windows depicting the Saint's and Jesus Christ and all had a halo shining brightly above their heads. This night the church was to be disturbed for the fifth time in a month.
"I absolutely forbid it child" cried the priest running towards the young man in a nightgown. He was a wizened old man with bright white hair, his eyes where half shut after being awakened by a sound of clanging metal, the boy was back and he was spooning holy water into twenty, easily broken glass jars "This water is not to be taken from the church".
"Then what else can I use against them Father" cried the man as he capped the last bottle and began to slip them into belt straps, when he opened his jacket the priest spied an assortment of wooden stakes, five on each side all neatly fastened to the jacket but ready to yank free if need be "You know better than me that normal water does fuck all to the beasts".
"This water is not a weapon, why don't you let me bless your own water-" the priest whined but was interrupted.
"No time Father I am sorry" the man bent on one knee and took the priests right hand and put it on his own head "The only blessing I need is yours so I can hunt safely tonight".
The boy was just turning eighteen and was following his own dangerous path, his father was a city banker in the Garadon Capital of Rashis and the priest knew that his father disapproved of his sons career, if it could be called that, his hair was short and black, his fringe didn't go past his big blue eyes, his hearing was as sharp as humanly possible so he could hear a faint whisper two metres away, his face was handsome and muscular, 'a dashing rogue' some called him.
"I can't" The priest said sadly "Your father said for me not to".
"My father is a useless banker with no time for me unless he's hindering my progress as a hunter" said the boy "Like now, I could die tonight; I wish to go to god blessed if it should happen".
The priest saddened "What is my word to a young man like you"?
"Safety and clarity father" said the man, begging almost "I only want our city free of the bastards".
"Then go safely, and next time be prepared, if I catch you helping yourself to my Holy Water, I'll call a guard" the old man took a breath "Go safely again, May God guide your path in all that you do each night you hunt".
The man kissed the priests hand tenderly.
"Go then and make them answer for their sins" the priest said, always getting overly exited when the young man glowed with his contagious energy, the priest eyed the bread and water he left for the needy and snatched up loaf and threw it to Hanian "And for God's sake eat something".
Hanian caught the bread and smiled before holding it in his mouth as he turned and ran from the church.
Kiana trudged through the deep mud, her feet were cold as the mud seeped in through the many holes in each of her heavy though thinned boots, she recalled them being much thicker a year ago, currently she wore a ragged red sweater with a purple stripe running across the middle, her blue jeans where torn at the bottom and knees, she had short red hair (thanks to the knife she found to cut it with) and was her skin was pale but thankfully her face and body looked younger than eighteen which kept men from mistaking her for a whore so she avoided the unwanted attention. The city of Rashis was a cruel place for anyone who was homeless to live, Vampires stalked the streets at night and normal people ignored Kiana, the police force attempted to catch Nameless and urchins and usually execute them within the day.
Nameless were people whose families had disowned them for some severe injustice, poor or rich it happened sometimes, Kiana was one such person, but she had never knew her family or her name so she made her own, it meant nothing special, not peace, hope or justice, just a name she randomly thought up. It seemed to Kiana that she was abandoned for being a child no one wanted.
Kiana didn't remember a lot of how she survived the last eighteen years on the streets, someone had looked after her but she died when Kiana was six of a disease Kiana could not remember to well, but she died horribly but since Kiana was so young the women's name didn't stick in her mind, nor her face or anything about their time together, just the knowledge that she died painfully and slowly which resigned the Nameless to a deep depression, she didn't let anyone in nor did anyone try. Kiana had gotten by mostly through small, though rare, charity or taking refuge in the church near the Entertainment district, her only friend in the world was the priest there, The entertainment district was a dangerous area of Rashis, a feeding ground for vampires which was why Kiana noticed so many hunters, some in groups and some alone, they ignored Kiana, civilian or victim was how hunters saw people, they cared only about fame, justice or the thrill of turning the brutes into dust.
Kiana decided to head towards the church, the priest would be sleeping by now, but he often left large stacks of bread and water by the church alter inside.
Along the way she crossed two busy roads, despite the late hour many people drove around, Taxis, Lorries and normal cars were plentiful at any time of day, she carefully walked through several allies, making sure there was no one hiding, she did see one man staring at the alley from a roof, but a second later he vanished, so Kiana quickly ran from that particular alley.
She made it to the church without being followed, before she could enter the holy place the doors burst open and a man garbed in black ran right into her.
Both Kiana and the man fell to the ground, but the man was back on his feet quickly and climbed on top of her, holding a steak to her heart.
Kiana didn't flinch; the man's face was blank as he held the deadly weapon to the helpless Nameless.
"Ouch" said Kiana, the boy was heavy built, he had his hands on the scruff of her collar which hurt her neck, but the least of her worries, the fibres in the shirt weren't as strong as they used to be and she worried about falling out of it. The hunter would have been threatening, had he not had a bit of bread dangling from his mouth, which he ripped out when he saw her staring "Nice steak" said Kiana, slightly nervous for her life "Can you get off now".
"She's no vampire Hanian, just a Nameless" said the priest "She comes here sometimes".
The man looked at the priest and nodded and let her go, she fell to the ground, hitting her head slightly.
Hanian stepped off the Nameless and held out a hand, she didn't take it but instead helped herself up rubbing the back of her skull, he withdrew his gesture quickly.
He had to go now though, Vampires didn't wait.
"Hanian can you delay a second" demanded the Priest "Perhaps you can escort the Nameless home when she had something to eat".
"I'm not an escort, nor under your employment father" replied Hanian.
"But you're using my holy water as a weapon so stay put".
Hanian sighed and watched as the girl was led into the church, a pitiful thing, looked no older than fifteen to his reckoning, but something told his she was older, and she was also very pale. He decided to follow the priest back into the church, he walked back towards the alter, out walking the priest and the girl and snatched up another loaf of the plentiful bread and pouring a glass of water but after looking at the girl he decided on pouring two and put a two pieces of bread beside her glass.
Kiana didn't need help walking or anything usually but lately she hadn't been feeling herself so the priest helped her along, she found a glass of water and two hunks of bread waiting for her, she grabbed the plate and sat on a pew, the priest joined her.
She picked a piece of bread up and took a bite before thanking the hunter "I won't get in your way while you escort me back, I don't sleep far from here".
The man nodded as he chewed on his own second hunk. Kiana stopped staring and focused on her own meal, it would keep her going for a day or so, she was always welcome in the church but the bread was for everyone who needed it, and the priest had been known to deny charity to those who abused his.
"You look awful Kiana" inquired the Priest "Worse than the last time I saw you".
"You know how it is father" replied Kiana "Illness is ripe amongst the homeless".
"What are your symptoms?" asked the Hunter.
"Just a cough at first but I've been getting dizzy when I walk".
Kiana nodded, she went red in the cheeks.
"Flu, you won't last the month" said Hanian.
The priest looked angrily at the hunter; his mood swings did little to encourage the girl to better health and her depression did a worse job.
"Just go Hanian; you don't seem to care in the slightest" shouted the priest. Hanian swallowed the last of his bread at the same time as Kiana.
"Come on" he said "I'm eager to hunt".
"Don't go looking for trouble with Kiana".
Kiana went redder, she wasn't used to an argument involving her wellbeing, but she had started to hate the hunter after his remark to her illness.
"I'll drop her off at my apartment, she can rest there" he said shocking both the girl and priest.
"Are you sure Hunter" said Kiana "You didn't seem to care a minute ago".
"He has mood swings my dear" said the Priest "He's tough to cope with in this mood but most of the time you'll find him honest in everything he says".
Kiana looked at back of the man as he walked from the church; Kiana turned to the Priest and quickly bowed to him then ran to catch up with him.
The Priest smiled as the two left side by side, perhaps they would ne good for each other in the end.
In truth, Hanian did care for her Illness, he felt a need to help her get better, give her safety of some sort, maker her feel welcome in his home unlike his father did to Hanian, he was about as welcome as a Vampire there now-a-days.
"I'm sorry for what I said earlier" Hanian's apology was genuine "I know about my mood swings and I do control myself nine times out of ten".
"Its ok" said Kiana "No one cares for a Nameless anyway".
Hanian sighed, boy she was depressed "You need to lighten up, plenty of homeless folk put on a brave face which I get but don't seclude yourself from people".
Kiana laughed "Like you don't, Mr dark Vampire Hunter".
Hanian laughed, she was open, but nervous when she spoke like she was afraid anyone would slap her to put her in her place, and some people had, the girl laughed too but swayed in the effort so Hanian put her arm round his shoulder.
It was uneventful from then on, Kiana vomited once and collapsed a couple of times, they reached his home, the top floor of an apartment building, with Kiana still alive but since the elevator was out he had to take the stairs, he decided to carry her up them.
Kiana was barely awake when she was carried into Hanian's single room home because after five minutes of hugging into his chest she felt sleepy but she studied her surroundings as best she could. In the right corner there was a single bed and a television facing it, on the left side there was a sink, counter, cooker and fridge. It was clean and tidy.
"Feel free to use my bed" said Hanian lowering her onto it and wrapping the blanket round her, and then he went towards a set of drawers and pulled out a pair of white cotton trousers and a blue shirt.
"Change into these" he said "I'll wash these when I get back".
Kiana weakly grasped his hand, she had taken a turn for the worst but she was warm and safe, so only sleep could help her now.
"Thanks for letting me stay with you" she said weakly and she drifted into a sleep.
So she did get the idea, she was his roommate now, it suddenly seemed to Hanian that the priest might have planned this all along, he had that effect on people.