11 August 1977 - 7 December 2000
Requiescant in Pace
It was strange that I hadn't seen her until now. I saw her sitting on the rocky parapet across from me, her slender, delicate hands resting centimeters onto the stone ledge. She was cute, beautiful, and even strangely erotic, even though she was only, at most, fifteen. She was wearing a short wraparound dress, pale blue in color, which was tied in the front with a large red bow that wrapped about her abdomen.
Her head hung forward, slightly hidden by the long sleeves of her dress. The cloth would only hang to her mid-thigh, if she was standing. Her left leg was hooked under the crook of her right knee. Her other leg swung freely over the edge. The first thing I noticed about the girl, besides her beautiful and lithe figure, was that she had only one sandal. It was on her right foot, with leather wraps which extended to her mid-calf.
It was then that she looked my direction. Her eyes, good Lord, her eyes were beautiful. They weren't normal, by any means, but a strange golden color. They were happy and sad at the same time. Next, I noticed her hair. It was all pulled to her left, leaving a wisp of hair hanging freely on the right. A small bun draped into a long ponytail which was held in place with a slender red ribbon spiraling up the length of her dark brown hair.
Then, I lost myself again in those strange eyes.
I realized why she was up here, the knowledge filtering through my clouded mind. By God, it looked like she was going to jump. "Wait!" I cried, hoping she wouldn't plummet to her doom before I could reach her. "What are you doing?"
She looked down again, as I rose to stop her. "Flying," she said. "It's fun." With that, she tumbled face forwards from the cliff. I had risen to my feet by now, and peered over the edge. I saw her disappear into the mist of the morning fog, and turned to a small path that led to the shore, praying she wasn't dead.
I suppose I should tell you a little about myself. I am an American named Russel Strong. I am a former millionaire. Actually, I was almost a billionaire before my business collapsed from the inside out, the victim of an anonymous hacker who subtly altered all our data.
I tried to keep my investment firm from sinking, but after losing over $800 million, I sold out, keeping a mere ten million dollars after paying all my expenses. I thought about restarting, being more secure this time, when I found out I had only six months to live. It was a strange new disease; something no one knew how to cure. The last three days were hell, but until then, you were absolutely fine. Good thing it was almost impossible to transmit.
So, nine million dollars went to trying to find someone who could cure me. That was five months ago. The prognosis hasn't changed, so I came to Japan, having always wanted to come here, only as a tourist, not a businessman.
I spent my last million dollars, well, almost all of it, indulging my fantasies and learning more about their fascinating culture. That was three weeks ago. The last of my money went to purchasing the white gi and black hakima, that I am now wearing, and a katana, wakazashi, and tanto. Reading up on the samurai code of honor, I deemed the best way for me to die was to commit seppuku. Without a second person to behead me, I had come to this cliff, and planned to cut myself while sitting on the edge. The fall would take care of the rest.
And that brings me to this rocky cliff. I was ready to kill myself when I saw that beautiful girl jump off the edge of the cliff.
I saw my life in her fall. Starting high, soaring wonderfully, then disappearing into a fog of nothingness. I ran down the little trail, determined she would at least get a proper burial. She must have left so much behind.
I had reached the end of the path, and was about to begin searching for her when I heard a wonderful, twinkling laughter. I couldn't place where it was originating from, but I began surveying my surroundings more carefully as I moved forward.
Then, from nowhere, she appeared, resting against a tree, her hands behind her back and her left foot braced against the tree trunk. I almost ran into her. "But... But, you just?" I stammered. She giggled more of that twinkling laugh, her eyes sparkling and punctuating the sound with a starry glow. Finally, I could speak again. "You just jumped off the cliff?"
"But, here you are, talking to me."
Finally she responded. Musical is how I would describe her voice. "Yes, I jumped. But like I said, I flew." I couldn't deny the possibility. Here she was, standing. Beautiful, exotic, and unharmed.
"You don't want to die, do you?" She asked. Her eyes seemed to see everything in me, golden orbs which danced, merrily contrasting the gray skies. I, on the other hand, could only see her surface. She was a true mystery, something not entirely normal, and all the better for it.
"No," I replied. It was true; I didn't want to die. "But, if I don't die like this, I will die, in pain and suffering, and hopelessness. A deathbed of a wretched disease awaits me."
She took everything in, listening passively, then responded, sweetly. "What would you do if I said I could remedy your disease?"
"You can't." The statement made my surprise fade to depression. "It's impossible. The best doctors don't know how, so how could you?"
She moved from the tree, walking closer, catching me and holding me captive in those beautiful golden eyes. One foot slowly moved in front of the other, and she quietly closed the distance. Soon, she was right next to me, and I was staring downward into her eyes, for she was much shorter than myself. "But, you want to live, don't you?" She asked. Could she really cure me?
I couldn't move from looking in her eyes. "Yes." I hesitated, unsure. "Yes, I want to live."
Once I said that, she moved closer, still, and wrapped her arms around my shoulders. She pulled me, delicately, but forcefully, closer, stopping when my face was nuzzled against her shoulder. Even if I wanted to, I couldn't resist. Soon enough, I felt her warm breath against my neck.
It was, I thought as I looked upon her head, brown hair swirling in the soft, intermittent breeze, like chance had given me hope.
Then her lips made contact, followed by the feel of, I guess, teeth. It was so powerful, the feelings I had, that I moved my mouth to her neck, and began to kiss her there. Nothing had felt more right than being here with her.
Immediately after I had begun kissing her, the most wonderful sensation began flooding through me. It was like everything wrong with me was being cast out, while everything good was staying behind. I can't even fully describe it, other than to say it was truly the most wonderful thing I had ever felt.
However, this came with a price. I was growing weaker and weaker. I realized what she was doing, and still couldn't pull myself from her. Not that I wanted to.
"Russel, you have to finish," she whispered in my ear, barely audible above the waves and breeze. I knew, instinctively, what I had to do. I don't know how, but my teeth had grown just enough to puncture her neck, and I pressed against her.
She started under my inexperienced prodding, and then guided me to the right spot. Her warm blood flowed into my mouth. It was truly heaven. Nothing could match this feeling: it was more intense than the prior one.
The strength I had lost was returning ten, no, hundred fold. Finally, she pulled away. Again, even with my new strength, I was helpless to resist. I thought she would die from blood loss, as I had dug deeply into her skin, but when she moved back, the wound healed instantly.
A third voice then entered the picture. Slowly, hazily, it reached though the fog of the exquisite experience I just had gone through. "Miyu! What have you done?" It was a woman's voice. Slowly, my head turned to see a beautiful woman, in her later-20's running towards us. She seemed to finally understand what had happened, and spoke again. "Miyu, you monster! How can you do this?"
The little girl, Miyu, I guess, cocked her head. "When will you understand, Himiko?"
"You've just turned him into another vampire. That's all I need to know!"
So that's what happened. Funny, it wasn't anything like the old myths and legends say.
Miyu responded, "He was going to kill himself. I just felt like giving him another chance. This was the only way he could live. No one else could help him." She paused for a time, while the words drifted on the wind. Then, she looked straight at Himiko and began to speak again. "You seem to always want people to suffer when they can live happily, and want those to die who are given a chance to live. Why is that, Himiko? Why do you torture others so much?"
Himiko pulled up short. It was almost like Miyu had broken down a wall, one which Himiko had prided herself on for a good long time. Indeed, when Miyu led me into the mist, Himiko didn't follow.
After a long walk, she turned to me. "You know what I have given you, don't you." She said it as if I already knew, which I did.
"Yes, Miyu. You made me into a vampire, didn't you?"
"Russel, I gave you this because I find it funny. You die and because of it, live. Me, a little girl, can cure an incurable disease that most doctors haven't even heard of yet." She made a little giggle at the end.
I couldn't say anything. I knew it was a whim that had saved me.
"Russel, you will not die by mortal hands. However, I will come and kill you if you do anything to upset the view humans have. You can pretend to live hundreds or thousands of different lives for all I care. Or, you can choose to live out just one life.
"When you decide you wish to die, I will come and find you again. However, if you let others know what you are, I will, as well, come and find you. I give you my word. I only do that, because I think, in a little way, I like you." More giggling. Music was in her little laugh. Music which I heard in my soul.
Finally, I could speak. "So, I can't die, except by your hands?"
"No. Almost any Shinma could kill you, but they probably won't attack you. There are easier targets."
"And I will only die when I want to, or when someone finds out what I am?" I questioned.
"When someone believes you are what you are. Except Himiko, I like her, too." I heard her laughter again, and watched as she disappeared from sight. Gone completely.
Minutes passed, as I comprehended what had occurred. Finally, I left the mists and found Himiko, sitting on the ground. She looked up to me. "How could you let her do that?" She was furious, that was obvious in her voice, though her face was a mask of calmness.
"I wanted it. I guess. She was right, though. By next week, I would have been dead, had I not killed myself today. That is why I was here--to kill myself."
She looked at me strangely, but said nothing.
"So, what does Miyu do?" I continued.
"She sends the Shimna back to the dark. But, she also attacks people for their blood," Himiko responded.
"So, you could say she slays demons, in her own way," I commented quietly, and saw Himiko nod her head in mute agreement. "I think she slew my own demon today."
Well, that's the story. I hope you enjoyed it.
If you liked it, then let me know, as well as if you didn't like it.
I can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org and almost always reply within a day.
Also, see my homepage (http://www.warewolf.webwizards.net/index.html).
back to the Short Story Page.A Different Demon, 20 April 1996