One Heck of a Night

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Humor  |  House: Booksie Classic
A long night turns into one heck of a weird night as a young man just wants to get some sleep but ends up running for his life.

Submitted: April 11, 2016

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Submitted: April 11, 2016

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Jose was on the verge of death. He had been traveling for over six hours on his just as exhausted horse and he still had not made it to the town of Betlina. He was sure without a doubt now that he had made a wrong turn at the fork on the road. Even though he was sure that his grandmother had told him to go left on the road, chances are she the old woman had forgotten the directions, and sent him on the wrong path. Still though, he was sure he would have reached another town by now, but the trail simply kept on going and going. To make matters worse, it had begun pouring rain. Jose loved the rain, seeing that his birthday was in April, but this freezing rain in the middle of January was really beginning to question his undying love of the weather.

He needed to find shelter soon, the damp clothing pressed tightly against his skin was a dangerous predecessor to pneumonia, and the hours on the road were beginning to affect his horse. His horse could barely muster any effort to go forward, and it was only a matter of time before he just refused to move at all. The thought that he might die here, with just his horse as company of all things, filled his mind and try as he might, he could not get it out of his head. Even thinking of his girlfriend Maria waiting for him back home could not erase the thought of him dying with his horse, just staring at him as he joined the Gods above.

A loud neigh from his horse broke his concentration on his looming death. Looking up he saw two large structures in front of him. The darkness of the night completely blinded him except for the occasional bolt of lightning. From what he could tell they were too large castles, both in complete disarray. What was most intriguing was the color of the two castles. One was colored green while the other one a dark red. Most castles he had seen were gray, with only the richest of kings painting there castles but even these were rare. To see two castles right next to each other both colored came as a complete surprise to the young man. Parts of the green castle had completely collapsed, and it seemed as though the lush vegetation of the Spanish countryside had engulfed most of it. The red castle though confused Jose even more. The castle looked like it had once been besieged. Ladders lay all over it and random holes in the castle, signs of cannon fire, lay all about it. That wasn’t even the most confusing part of it. The most confusing part was that there seemed to be someone living in it! It took Jose a minute to figure it out, while coming ever closer to the castles, but he could faintly make out candles lying all about the windows of the castle. Why someone was living in a besieged castle, in such a rural part of the country, was beyond him, but maybe they could give him shelter for the night. He only hoped whoever was there was friendly.

The sight of the structure must have renewed the horse’s strength as Jose did not even need to urge the horse on towards the red castle. He doubted anyone was in the green castle, but if worse came to worse, he could at least find shelter there so he did not mind the direction his horse was taking them. Finally they made it to the gates of the castle. Unsurprisingly, the gates were half torn apart and Jose entered without having to knock or call out for anyone. Finally being out of the intense downpour brought a sigh of relief both to Jose and to the horse. That sigh was quickly replaced with a gasp however, as Jose saw just how huge the structure was. Even though it was just the front of the castle, it encompassed a huge hall, with at least over fifty doors to who knew where. The number of candles all around them must have numbered the hundreds, as Jose had no difficulty even noticing the various crevices and corners of the hall.

“Who goes there?” shouted an unknown voice.

The sudden voice of another man startled Jose. He had been expecting someone to be living there, but did not expect them to already have taken notice of the tired traveler.

“My name is Jose, and I am seeking shelter from the rain. I can offer some coins for your services if you would be so kind.”

“I have no need for your money. Tie your steed down and follow me to my master’s chambers.”

Jose was about to reply thanks, but the mysterious stranger walked out through a door before he could muster the words. He left the door wide open, and seeing that all the others doors were closed, it would be pretty clear cut where Jose had to go.

Tying his horse down, and promising to bring food to him soon, Jose quickly followed suit. Like the gigantic hallway around him the path was well lit with torches. It was also very well decorated, with some amazing artwork around as he kept walking. It was odd though, Jose thought to himself as the artwork was amazing but looked extremely dated. The clothing that the various people in the drawings wore had gone out of fashion for over 100 years. Even his great grandfather, who had made it to the age of 80, had never worn anything of the sort. Whoever lived here must have had a lot of money, because these drawings must be worth a fortune Jose pondered to himself as he kept walking.

Finally Jose entered a much smaller hallway with only ten doors around in a circle. A crude opening right by one of the doors showed that a cannonball had come right through here before. Like before, Jose followed the door that had been left open. Upon entering Jose saw the mysterious stranger. Upon looking closer at the fellow Jose realized that the man was quite young probably nineteen just like himself he reckoned. Unlike Jose however, the man was so pale he might have very well been albino. So light was his skin that it was the first thing he noticed in the room, not even the other person in there as well.

“Hello there,” said the woman.

Jose was just as startled this time around as before. He really had to work on paying attention to what was around him Jose took a mental note of. Catching his composure, Jose quickly muttered a reply.

“My name is Jose Madam. I believe I took a wrong turn on the road and I am seeking shelter for the night. I am sorry for the inconvenience but if I can repay you in any way I can I will do so in a heartbeat.”

After saying this Jose took a look at the woman. Her beauty completely took him by surprise. The woman like the man was young and extremely pale, yet this completely worked in the woman’s favor. Her skin seemed smoothed to the touch and Jose quickly got the urge to touch and see if this was true. Her hair was a bright red and smoothly went down to her knees. She sat on a chair stroking it softly. The sight of it immediately relaxed Jose and he felt quite calm compared to how he felt out in the rain only a little while ago.

“My name is Elizabeth,” said the woman, “and in case he has not introduced himself this is my associate Charles.”

“It is a pleasure to meet you both Elizabeth and Charles.”

“So you were lost in the woods huh? It is not often we receive visitors in these parts. We will be glad to provide you food and shelter for this night. Please make yourself at home for the evening. We will go around to the kitchen to make you a nice meal. If you go to the room right across from here you will find a spare bed where you can rest your tired bones. I will call for you when the meal is ready.”

Jose said his thanks, excused himself, and headed for the room. The room itself was nothing spectacular, but like all the other rooms it was filled with candles all around. Jose couldn’t help but wonder to himself how they had some many candles lit up. Still though he could try to find out about that later, for now though he could lie down finally!

Chapter Two

“Wake up Jose.”

Jose awoke with a start. For the third time he had been startled. Jose softly slapped himself for yet again being startled. Standing a little too close for comfort was Charles.

“Food is ready Jose. Get changed and I will be waiting for you outside of the room.”

Jose was going to mutter thanks to Charles but yet again Charles quickly scuttled out of the room. Changing into some spare clothes he had brought for the trip, Jose soon joined him and they went to the dining hall.

Charles was a very quiet individual Jose soon realized. Every question Jose threw at him, from how long they had been living there, to what was up with all the candles, was met with short one word answers or simple grunts. From what he could garner, the two of them were the only ones living at the castle, no one lived in the green castle, the castle had been unsuccessfully raided some time ago, and the candles apparently were worth just grunts from Charles.

In the dining hall Jose saw the table full of all kinds of refreshments and meats. Everything from wine, to veal was laid out there. Jose had expected maybe bread, a little meat, and a pint at best, but nothing like this!

“This is so much! I never expected such a meal. I am honored but there is no way I could ever pay you for such hospitality.”

“Nonsense,” Elizabeth curtly responded. “Like I said it has been some time since we have had a guest, so we would like to treat you justly so.”

The young traveler didn’t need to be told this twice. With that said he grabbed a seat and began to enjoy the feast. Even though there was so much food around, he noticed that the two only dabbled a little in the wine.

“I know the wine is delicious,” said Jose. “Yet surely you must be hungry as well since you placed so much food on the table.”

“We ate before you arrived unfortunately,” said Elizabeth. “We did not expect anyone and this food will spoil if it isn’t eaten so there is no loss for us if you were to eat lavishly in front of us.”

With that Jose thanked them and ate like he had never eaten before. They even had lobster! He had only heard of the delicious crustacean but never could afford it before. The talk of the flavor did not disappoint as he was surely pleased by the taste.

Unlike Charles Elizabeth was more talkative and she asked Jose all kinds of questions. Where was he from? What was he doing on the road? How was the king of their region doing? How old was your horse? The horse! Jose had forgotten but Charles, ever ready, assured him that the horse had been fed and was resting comfortably at the grand hall.

What great hosts these were! Jose simply could not believe his luck. Could he have met anyone nicer on his trip? Hardly! With his belly full he could feel the exhaustion coming full swing. He asked if he could be excused for bed. They wished him a good night sleep and told him they would take care of the cleaning.

Chapter Three

The bed was comfortable, the blankets kept him warm, yet Jose just could not sleep. He felt as if something was wrong. Sure the hosts had been friendly, but they were maybe a little too friendly. He still had many questions though. Why were they out here by themselves? How could two people have all this food to themselves? What was up with the bloody candles? It should not have bothered him so much but it did.

Suddenly he heard the doorknob jiggle. At first he thought of answering to ask who it was, but instead he closed his eyes, pretending to sleep. Why would they awake him at this hour? Very silently the door was opened and the two hosts entered. There were eerily quiet as they walked towards the bed. Normally in a castle like this the sound of footsteps was pretty prevalent, but they had not made a noise at all. It was almost….not human.

Standing next to the bed, he could hear the two of them whispering to themselves still thinking he was asleep.

“It is my turn to feast, it has been too long since we have enjoyed a human,” whispered Elizabeth.

“Hardly sister! You did not do anything to prepare him. You did not get the food ready, did not prepare his bed, or anything! All you did was talk to him. Something I could have done!”

“What the hell?” Jose thought to himself. His fear was slowly turning into reality. These must have been vampires. He could not believe it. His mother had always told him to be wary of beautiful people too friendly to travelers on the road. But he had always thought it was an old wives tale. Most of his friends did not even believe the stories to be true anymore. No one could say the last time a vampire had been seen.

Pushing Elizabeth behind him, Charles bent down toward Jose’s neck opening his mouth. Sneaking a peak, Jose saw the two sharp teeth protruding out of his mouth. Yup, that was definitely a vampire.

Wasting no time, Jose did what he thought was the best course of action. He punched Charles in the face. The punch caught Charles by surprise and he fell to the floor with a loud scream. The scream startled Jose but now was not the time to worry about being startled. Quickly rising he got up and wasted no time in throwing a nice left hook at Elizabeth. As much as he would have preferred to kiss her lips instead of punch them, punch them he did. With them both on the ground trying to collect themselves, Jose in nothing but his pajamas made a run out the door.

Jose had a good sense of direction, and with his life on the line it was even more so. He ran towards the huge hall as fast as his exhausted legs could take him.

“After him!” screamed Charles.

For vampires they were pretty fast. Looking back he could see the two of them hot on his heels. Instinct told him to yet again do a crazy stunt and that he did. Every time he passed a torch he threw it to the ground, delaying them reaching him. At one point he found the distance between them so great that he began aiming the torches at their heads.

Finally he made it to the great hall. His horse was still there thank the Gods! For a minute he thought the horse had been eaten. Had the horse been gone he did not know what he was going to do.

“Quickly horse! We must make haste.”

The thought briefly flashed through his head that he needed to name that trusty steed. Untying the horse, he yelled giddiup and the horse galloped out of the castle. Apparently the horse saw the stress on Jose because it ran the fastest Jose had ever seen it go. Good timing too because the two vampires had just made it to the door. Leaning to the side Jose grabbed a candle from the floor and threw it at them. Pointless? Maybe but Jose wasn’t thinking too straight at that time.

As they galloped in the rain Jose looked back. They were not venturing after him anymore, simply staring at him. He had made it out alive. He didn’t care what happened on the road from now on he wasn’t stopping until he made it to his destination. It would be a little weird entering the town with nothing but pajamas on, but he would never doubt the wisdom of his mother ever again.


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