Unnamed Journal Volume 3, Issue 1 - Page 18

Drunk Vampire Hunter I may have had a few. The mausoleum was still dark in the early morning hours, so I stood perfectly still and waited for the sun to come up full. The sun is your friend in this game. You can still kill them in the dark, but it’s harder - night is their element. So I waited, like a hole in reality, hardly breathing, in the dank odor of the mausoleum, processing every stray sound to be sure it wasn’t a coffin lid opening up. I probably came too early. Like I said, had a few. Eventually, the light shifted, and I knew it was time. I examined the coffins more critically now, and decided which one was the master’s. There’s always a master, the rest are new recruits. Vamps are exactly as predictable as you imagine; there’s almost no daylight between the pop culture images and the reality. As far as I’m concerned, Stoker was either a Renfield or a vamp himself. Neither can be ruled out. There were three coffins. The one at the far side of the Mausoleum is set up so as to appear in between the others when you walked in. This both demonstrated who was “head” and served as a tactical purpose. Sometimes, when you hit the master, the others wake up in full zombie mode to protect. Sometimes, they don’t. It’s still smart to hit the master first because when he goes down, the others usually suffer some kind of devastating emotional blow. Which means something about vamp psychology, which again, other people have spend lifetimes in musty libraries learning about. How they get the information is beyond me. I sure don’t report any of it. Probably it’s others. So I shoved the lid on what I surmise to be the master’s coffin. It goes across easily and hits the ground with a resounding noise. Enough to wake the dead, but not these dead. The humanoid form inside was a woman. She had blonde hair and full, lifelike cheeks and lips and skin like the dead don’t have. The Vamp Glamour Shot, I like to call it. She may or may not be the master. I’m gonna go for it anyway. So much of this gig is taking initiative. I reached into my bag and pulled the big wooden stake (it doesn’t have to be wood, but it’s hard to get metal or plastic in the right size, and it’s good to learn to make them yourself, and wood is easiest to work with), and my chopping axe ($34.99 Home Depot), and I set them where I would need them. I usually put the head of the axe into the coffin, so I can just grab it when I drive the stake home. You need to place it just right, so it doesn’t fall in or get bumped in the ensuing scuffle. Sometimes I take a shot before I start. You know, from the flask. Steady the nerves. And by sometimes, I mean every single time. We all have our rituals. Then I place the stake, size up the mallet, and bang. Vampire scream is unholy and horrid, like a soul being shredded. You hear it every time. This time was no different. You never get used to it. This one reached up at me with her talon fingernails but I had driven the stake home and a few minor scratches from a vamp won’t do you any lasting harm. I let go of the mallet and grabbed my axe and got her head off with one stroke. It bounced up slightly and landed upside-down inside the coffin. I spun around, preparing to meet other vamps, but the scream of their master/mistress hadn’t roused them.