Published January 24th 2018
Genres na, urban fantasy
In an abandoned warehouse in Manhattan, two enemies battle to the death, while outside, a malevolent entity watches and waits and plots, eager for blood. On an island in the heart of Seattle, an immortal princess struggles to lead a normal life just as a flood of terrifying creatures starts to pour in through a portal that should not be there. A young man meets a classmate while walking home from the college library, and embarks on the most dangerous adventure he’s ever known – will he survive? A deranged madman hunts the girl he’s lusted after for a century, in a relentless pursuit for vengeance. A prehistoric, mythical beast jealously guards a primeval land, which is leaking into present-day Seattle. A sweet, forbidden passion blossoms between two lovers who steal moments whenever they can, while unbeknownst to them, they’re hunted by a deadly creature.
A royal family threatened at its weakest – yet lethal in its own right – is stalked by an ancient evil that will not rest until they are utterly destroyed: a nightmare incarnate that has waited millions of years for revenge threatens the very existence of the young lovers and their family.
Will they prevail?
Spread out in front of them as they reached the top step was a panorama. Everything was in dark colors, with only backlit midnight blue touches here and there. The banner across the top far wall read, “The Vampire Across the Ages.”
Anna kept her face straight. What were the odds? Did he know? No, he couldn’t. Could he? No …
“Oh, this is fascinating,” he marveled as he let go of her hand and moved to examine the first piece in the exhibit.
Spread across the spacious top floor, the exhibit showed both the literary figure of the vampire, beginning with the most famous, Count Dracula, throughout the ages; and the historical figure of the vampire. A huge corner was dedicated to Bram Stoker’s novel. Anna moved to study the many artifacts and panels explaining it all.
Eric moved to the next piece, which was a large display of the historical Vlad the Impaler, and the history of his time.
“I had no idea Count Dracula was a real historical hero,” he said, half to himself. Coming up behind him, Anna looked over his shoulder at the presentation.
“Fascinating,” was all she said.
Eric lingered for several minutes reading the background on Vlad the Impaler; the Prince of Wallachia, he learned, was still hailed as a folk hero in Romania and Europe for defending the population against the Ottomans. The exhibit also featured some artifacts from Eastern Europe, including a painting of the prince against the backdrop of the Danube. It was beautiful.
Eric and Anna moved to examine all the artifacts near the front of the exhibit, then they walked to the side to examine depictions of vampires in various cultures. It explained how myth and fact merged, and how both were clouded in the mists of history. One display focused on African legends of creatures called shetani, primitive vampire-like animal spirits whose bodies were pitch black, distorted and shaped in unnatural ways, as if evolution had gone mad.
The back wall of the exhibit was cloaked in shadows. A diorama stretching back to half the length of the building and reaching up over twenty feet high had been set up as a huge European forest. Majestic great horned owls perched on high branches, hunched over, glowering down at the forest floor.
Back in the dark outer reaches of the forest, just visible from behind the trees, wolves and foxes with glowing eyes could be seen. Eric’s steps brought him toe to toe with the edge of the ‘forest’ and he peered into the dark shadows. Several silhouettes were suggestive of vampires lurking deep in the forest, peering out from behind the trees in this almost surreal woodland, which stretched back farther than they could see in the dim light.
A trail had been built, suggesting that patrons walk the winding path through the forest. If they looked hard, the suggestion of a black painted wall could be seen on the edges of the diorama, but otherwise, the illusion of a spooky forest reaching back a hundred miles was convincing. Eric stood at the head of the trail, not wanting to appear nervous, but feeling uncertain nevertheless.
“Do you want to go in?” he asked quietly.
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