Saturday, 13 February 2010

Vampire Etiquette

'Kingsteignton' started Roland cordially 'What a nice surprise?'

'Hardly, De Cazalrenoux, when you are wandering up and down the street outside my house with your two companions' returned Kingsteignton smoothly 'I was actually expecting you a lot sooner? What happened, did you have trouble getting Vladimirescu to agree to come?'

'On the contrary, Vladimirescu was the one urging us on, but a good night's rest and daylight both seemed to be a good idea'.

'And I suppose that there was the little matter of you being in wolf-form to be considered, hmm!'

By now it had occurred to the two vampires that Roland was no longer partaking in their conversation and was in fact talking to someone a few feet away from them on the pavement.

'Roland, Roland what are you doing?' shrieked Vlad 'We have important plans to make, you don't have time to give out directions! Just give the guy 50p or something and stop wasting valuable time!!'

A second later Vlad's bottom jaw was on the ground as 'the guy' turned around and he clocked that it was Kingsteignton.

'Good morning Vladimirescu, Good morning Count Antonescu, I was just issuing an invitation for morning coffee at my house. I believe that you were interested in seeing inside?'

Vlad looked helplessly to Roland for directions as to what he should say or do next. Roland pointed meaningfully at Kingsteignton's front door and mouthed 'say yes'.

Vlad, however, was not convinced.

'Umm, I'm not sure that would be appropriate Lord Kingsteignton, we are just out doing a bit of shopping you see and are in a bit of a rush!'

Kingsteignton merely raised his eyebrows a fraction.

'But it would be a lot easier to walk through the front door, Valdimirescu, than try and break in at the back? You will find that all the back windows are barred and alarmed. You won't be able to get in without being detected.'

'But why would we try to get in the back' squeaked Vlad, who was by now thoroughly unnerved.

'Come, come Vladimirescu, you know that I have something that you are seeking' said Kingsteignton in a soft voice as though he was soothing a child 'And you will be perfectly safe, what could I do to three fully-grown and strong Old Kingdomers in broad daylight?'

'Look Kingsteignton, the last time I saw you, you were a raving wreck in my hall, so I really don't know what you are capable of!' retorted Vlad.

'My boy, you really need to trust a fellow vampire to always have your best interests at heart! And please take heed of De Cazalrenoux's frantic gesturing behind me and join me for coffee. It will only take a few minutes of your time'.

'Oh very well then' mumbled Vlad ungraciously 'But you had better have Mike and he had better be unharmed!'

That's the spirit, Vladimirescu!' beamed Kingsteignton as he slipped his hand under Vlad's elbow and started leading him to his front door.

Roland waited until the Count has started to follow the other two vampires inside, before he moved to catch up the rear.

He still really didn't trust Antonescu and found it strange that the normally outspoken vampire had not said a word since Kingsteignton's sudden appearance on the pavement.

Roland had a brief sensation of cherry-striped walls, expensive walnut furniture and gleaming silver as he entered the house, before they were led into a large, elegant morning room shaded from the sun by special blinds to protect the vampires.

And sitting at a small table in front of a crackling fire they found Mike Costello halfway through a KFC Bargain Bucket, which he was washing down with liberal swigs from a litre bottle of Coke.

'Hi guys' he cheeerily greeted them, waving a half-gnawed drumstick in the air 'How's it going?'

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