Chapter 3.39 – Neon Nightmare

Chapter 3.39 – Neon Nightmare

For the night’s hunt, Seth had taken Faith to a club that, previously, she could only have dreamed of being allowed in to: the Orange Box. Faith had dressed up for the occasion and was excited to mingle with the kind of people who were allowed into a club that had a dress code, but Seth wasn’t sharing her enthusiasm. He’d forgone his hot-as-fuck jeans again, in favour of his traditional pirate garb, and was scanning the crowd carefully, lazily wafting his hand at anyone who came too close.

The music here was so not her thing, but it had a downright filthy bass and Faith, who was high on life, couldn’t help but get caught up in its beat, swinging her hips and gesturing at Seth to come and join her from the shadows. She saw the flicker of a smile on his stoic face as he watched her for a moment.

But it quickly passed, replaced with a general look of annoyance as he continued to ignore her in his pursuit of food.

She wished he’d just pick some poor fucker and go waste them already so he’d relax for five minutes. When they went hunting, Faith would usually sink her fangs into whichever man first showed her interest and one drink was enough for her. Seth would quietly take them out of Faith’s sight to finish them off and he would also brazenly grab another man or two during the course of the night. Mostly he’d spare her having to watch while he terrorised them but, she had to admit, she was becoming pretty desensitised to it all, as he’d told her she would.

It was hard not to. The man was insatiable; he never seemed to befull and when he was thirsty he was fucking awful to be around. Miserable. Snappy. Twitchy. Today had been particularly shitty, so she really didn’t understand why he was being so careful about choosing prey – surely anyone would do?

She shrugged and left him to wallow, closed her eyes and allowed the music to swallow her. She blended herself into the small crowd of beating bodies around her, feeling at one with this fluorescent world and everyone in it…

…Until she opened her eyes again, just in time to see a woman saunter up to her sulking boyfriend. She watched him lift an eyebrow, as enthusiastic as he got with humans, as he eyed her up. Even over the volume of the music, even over the screaming in her head, Faith could hear the bitch moving in on her man.

“You look just like the gorgeous guy from the TV, the fugitive? What’s his name now…?”

Seth smiled at this and beckoned her closer. As the woman approached him, he leaned into her and whispered something into her ear that caused her to melt.

Faith had seen enough. She stomped over, sending a man in a shirt, tie and uncoordinated sarong – how had he passed the dress code check? – flying.

Excuse me,” she snarled shoving the man-stealing tramp who was making googly eyes at her boyfriend and dealing Seth an almighty slap.

“That was highly uncalled for,” Seth murmured, rubbing his cheek and nodding towards the woman.

A few people had turned to look at the commotion, but the woman beside barely even seemed to have registered it. Her eyes were glazed over and Faith could feel the tremor of her heart, see the tiny beads of sweat on her forehead. She recognised what this was immediately.

Seth was toying with her emotions.

“You’re gonna drain her?!” Faith sputtered.

Faith couldn’t explain why Seth’s prey choice bothered her so much, but it did. It really bothered her. After the whole fiasco with Megan, Seth had never taken a female prey, at least not around Faith. Maybe that’s why it bothered her, Faith asked herself, because it reminded her of Megan, who had, with hindsight, reminded her of Melinda? Or was it because she hadn’t had chance to desensitise this kind of prey yet? Yeah, maybe that was it, she thought, trying to restrain the simmering rage, the deep, sick feeling she had.

She knew she was overreacting, but fuck knows she couldn’t stop it.

“But she’s so skinny,” Faith insisted. “You’ll be thirsty again in ten minutes. “The fat guy in the skirt has a good pulse,” she suggested, even though she knew it was pointless.

“Does he? Then he’s all yours.”

“But why her?!” Faith whined. “She’s… she’s…” She’s what? Faith thought, trying to understand why this situation burned her so badly.

She’s young. She’s just here to have a fun night. But both those things apply to sarong man, too.

Sarong man isn’t gorgeous with amazing legs…

Fuck.

“She’s… hotter than me.”

Seth laughed out loud. “Yes, a beating heart will do that, Faith,” he teased.

“You know what I mean,” Faith muttered.

“I do,” he concurred. “Not that I agree. Bloody hell, Faith, listen to yourself.” I’m going to kill this woman and you’re jealous of her?

Faith chewed her cheek, feeling stupid. It was stupid to be jealous of this woman, so why couldn’t she turn it off?

Seth glanced over at the trembling woman then around at the crowd. “Although, it seems that you are not the only one to have noticed that she is keen on the eye. Hm. I don’t have the capacity at the moment to…” he scratched his beard. “How about you cause a little distraction in this neon nightmare while I conduct my business with, ah, Rochelle?”

“Rochelle?” Faith sneered. “Oh, I’ll give you a distraction,” she hissed, lifting her hand, but this time he was prepared, grabbing her wrist in a vice-like grip and pulling her to him.

Enough. Rochelle is a recently divorced woman who has moved to a small apartment on the outskirts of Del Sol Valley to ‘start over’. She severed many connections in her home town to do so, and she hasn’t made any friends or connections of note yet. It will be a long while before she is missed by anyone. She is the perfect prey to commandeer accommodation from so, either I slaughter her, or you do. Those are the options.

Faith pouted, trying to free her wrist from his grasp. Is there no one else?

No. She’s perfect.

…That’s what I’m afraid of.

He sighed and let her go. Humans mean nothing to me, Faith. They are a food source, playthings, most are good as trash. Rochelle is a tool to utilise and nothing else. Is that clear?

Faith swallowed hard. “But—“

“No,” Seth cut in firmly. “Now, you go and do what you do best… pout, whine and seek attention over there.” He patted her on the ass, nudging her in the direction of the dancefloor.

Faith turned to protest, but the pair were already gone.

“Oh, blasphemy!” Sage gasped as she tripped over another creeping vine. She scorched it with a swift spell and kicked away the strangled residue with her toe, scuffing her neat little shoes in the process.

Gracious, she hated this wretched place! She longed to transportalate herself back home and to climb into her cosy bed with a good book, to lose herself in a world of bonny maidens and dashing knights… but thanks to the vampiric siblings, she was once again forced to keep up her façade of a role she’d hoped she’d retired from decades ago.

She was getting far too old for this nonsense.

Previously, convincing the other witches that she was a fearless hunter had been a doddle; they were all so terrified of vampires that no one would question the spoils of her ‘hunt’, her methods of capture or the holes in her execution. Even her late husband, Warren, had been in awe at how quickly and easily she could track down and slaughter the beasts.

But Bathsheba, regretfully, was neither blinded by fear nor gullible. Sage could not sit this one out and wait for a ‘befanged’ head to fall conveniently into her lap. No, she had to at least be seen to be scouring this blasted forest looking for the culprit, when the monster responsible was probably draining her son and groping her grand-daughter right at that very moment.

Caleb – at least, Lilith insisted it was Caleb, Sage very much had had her doubts – had, a number of times over the centuries, wreaked havoc, ‘accidentally’ taken lives and caused waves of hysteria. Sage had, naively, thought that the last few decades of peace had been because Lilith had either a) finally found a way to fix him, b) taken her suggestion and kept him locked in a cage or c) had enough and put the boy down like the troublesome dog he was.

Sage, who was now completely lost, but boldly continuing to wander through the winding paths of the forest as she mused, did not believe Lilith when she claimed that Seth was ‘dead’. She did not believe Lilith when she claimed that she didn’t know where he was.

She did not believe Lilith at all.

It was true that Lilith had been instrumental in Sage’s fortune. She and Ma had helped Sage to not only reintegrate to the coven that had shunned her mother, but to become a respected, essential member of it. Children of shunned and banished witches carried their parents’ stigma, yet, against the odds, Sage had secured a place of protection, sanctity and safety for herself, her son and the generations that would follow him.

And Sage was grateful for that. She was.

She was also quite sure that could create a cure for vampirism.

But!

Big But.

She wasn’t convinced the threat was gone.

And, until she was entirely convinced that her role in the coven of ‘esteemed vampire hunter’ could be truly resigned and her status preserved, until she believed a word that came from Lilith’s lips, she could not afford to cure her.

Until Lilith was the only remaining vampire…

…a vampire Lilith would remain.

The gloriously garish Orange Box Nightclub is by Snowbnuuy

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12 responses to “Chapter 3.39 – Neon Nightmare”

  1. Hmm… do I believe Seth that he found a victim whose home they could use for a while? Yes, I do. Do I believe him he isn’t simultaneously trying to desensitize Faith further? Absolutely not. Y’know… for a guy, he sure is freaking awesome at multitasking.

    …Sage… I’m wondering if I’m confused about her because I don’t have all the facts in order yet or if she herself is kind of confused. Now, starting with her status in the coven, sure. She’s trying to make sure her family’s place in life is as stable and secure as can be. Very understandable. But, even if she doesn’t wanna cure Lilith, she still ought to make the cure. Because without it, how will she make Lils be the “last vamp left?” I mean, April still counts as a vampire, and Sage wouldn’t hurt her at least, would she? It certainly seemed she cares for her.
    I’m also still unsure exactly why she wants to find Seth so much. There were moments when I felt like she actually genuinely wanted to find her dad, but now she seemed pretty cold. Did she only realize now that Seth is “a threat?” Is Lilith, despite everything, still protecting Seth here? Because that would be… I don’t even know. Kinda sad.

    Aaand… thanks for the heads up. *puts seat-belt on* Ready! ;D

    • Somewhere to stash his delicate fledgling during the day, delectable dinner and desensitisation to boot. A very convenient prey for Mr. Multi-tasker.

      “I’m wondering if I’m confused about her because I don’t have all the facts in order yet or if she herself is kind of confused.”. Hmm. It might be you, but it might not just be you.

      • I don’t know where the rest of my reply to you went. Perhaps my spam filter thought my reply was spam as it had so many links in. I can’t remember what I typed, either, even though it was five minutes ago. Probably some nonsense, so here’s some more.

        Oh! That was it! Is Lilith protecting Seth? Does it help if I tell you she’s protecting someone? Probably not. 🤔

        • Haha… I don’t think I believe Sage is getting senile just yet. She may not be willing to admit some unpleasant truths to herself… but completely out of it? No, I don’t really think so. Though I would not put it past her to try and make a few select someones think she is.

          Hmm… no, I guess not. Lilith is always trying to protect someone.

  2. There is no doubt that the intensity is increasing in strength and now I detest Seth again.
    How was I even seduced into feeling some kind of pity for him? It’s over now 😠

    The pact between Lilith and Sage has major consequences for both of them. Maybe most for Lilith. I’m not convinced of her reason for holding hands over Seth unless she really thinks she can turn everyone into the good guys.
    How is it even possible without a cure?
    Sage needs Lilith’s abilities and therefore she will never reveal the cure (If she knows the recipe at all.)
    I’m preparing for some heads to roll.

    Thanks for the update. I’m buying a new bottle of port wine so I’m sure I can numb my nerves 🥴

    • You love him, you hate him, you love to hate him and hate to love him. Maybe the pity will return or maybe it is gone for good. Only you can decide where your heart lies.

      Ooh a new bottle wine to numb your nerves? I’d say ‘it’s not that bad’ but… well, it might be.

  3. Hangry Seth would be funny if it was sugar cravings or the like but his “miserable, snappy and twitchy” self when he hasn’t drunk enough sounds like a person with an addiction problem. And one that’s having increasing issues with getting what he needs from his supply, so keeps taking more to reach the same point. Is there a point where a vampire becomes truly insatiable? What do they turn into when that happens?

    My first thoughts were “oh, he found something in her head that he can exploit” and “oh darn, she recognized him so now he has to get rid of her to cover their trail” but of course Faith’s head goes straight to the woman moving in on her boyfriend. She’s so painfully insecure. And Seth might ooze confidence but he does not radiate trust that could ease her mind over time. She’d need a completely different person to learn how to trust again, wouldn’t she?

    I’ve commented before that I got the feeling that Faith saw women as people, but not men, and I’m getting that same feeling here. That and her instantly being jealous of anyone remotely attractive (in her eyes) to Seth. Still has no idea what bothers her about it so much either though the realization that she saw the previous woman as Melinda is surprisingly insightful.
    … she never did deal with it later, did she?

    Hoo boy. So Sage doesn’t believe that all vampires are gone, and until she has proof that they are, she won’t cure Lilith and, by extension, she probably won’t cure April and Melinda. Leaving Lilith’s motivations out of it, that’s… that’s horrible. She’s asking for a Devil’s proof. You can prove that something exists, but it is impossible to prove that something doesn’t. My gods. Even if Lilith would kill every rogue vampire out there, including Bob, she would never be able to prove that everyone else is gone. Sage is condemning Lilith to an eternity of vampirism with no end in sight. Who needs enemies with friends like that indeed 😐

    Woo! Twice-weekly chapters! I don’t think I can keep up but I’m going to try 😁 Let’s get this final roller coaster started WEEEEEEEEEEE

    • Damn. An insatiable vampire would be terrifying. “What do they turn into when that happens?” 😐

      “My first thoughts were… but of course Faith’s head goes straight to…” That is probably because your brain is nice and squishy and well-rounded and capable of sensible thought and Faith is Faith. She is painfully insecure, lost in her fantasy and how she wants things to be. No, she never did deal with it later. Maybe one day she should.

      Devil’s proof exactly! It cannot be disproven. Now, either Sage is mad/that cruel, or she knows that Lilith is covering for what is, by all accounts, a monster. And Lilith? If it was as easy as just handing over Seth, she’d have probably done that by now. I see you dancing around the whys, getting so close… and really wanna nudge you but I promise I won’t. 🤐

  4. “Oh, blasphemy!” Sage gasped as she tripped over another creeping vine. She scorched it with a swift spell and kicked away the strangled residue with her toe, scuffing her neat little shoes in the process.
    ^^ lmao If I were a witch I’d do the same thing. ANY thing that pissed me off would suffer.

    Seth is pretty no-nonsense. Faith needs to have more faith in Seth. Like he said, he doesn’t view humans as anything other than playthings and food. But, that could just be him sweet-talking her :p

    I also wonder how the dude in the sarong got into a dance club with a dress code… HAHA He looks like he’s dressed for a Zoom meeting. Business on top… Fun? Casual? on the bottom. Goodness, I hope he has on undies. >.<

    • Ooh, sounds like you’d be quite dangerous with the power of the elements at your fingertips; scorching plants, turning co-workers into cockroaches. 😆

      Faith having more faith in Seth is an interesting one. She willingly handed herself over to him and, since then, has had no conviction at all in her decision. Not that he’s exactly helping her to, mind. He knows exactly what he’s doing (or, he thinks he does, hehe).

      Hahaha! Now I’m totally going to be wondering what my colleagues are wearing on the bottom during calls. I gave all the club-goers appropriate outfits prior to the scene, but the day of the shoot was a heatwave so most arrived in their hot weather gear instead. I changed the worst offenders, but couldn’t be bothered to change them all, so Mr. Sarong got a free pass… this time. 😆

      • Beware overgrown shrubbery and coworkers that nobody would miss! 😀

        I can’t say I blame her for handing herself over to him. Meeeow.

        Hahaha the seed of wonder has been planted. Excellent *Mr Burns hands*
        Ugh, that sucks your sims revolted. I had that issue too, and had taken half the photos for the scene before realizing it (it was just 1 sim, but still redoing photos wasn’t gonna happen), so I feel your pain. It’s slightly frustrating that there aren’t many in-game cheats to bypass these features.
        You know though, Mr. Sarong is NOW a character. Title and all. Maybe your sims orchestrated this fashion defiance to CAST a character of THEIR choosing, and lo and behold, the birth of Mr. Sarong.

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