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    Invnarcel
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Necromancer - 11. epilogue

Five days later I found Angela.

She was still in town, determined to beat me in our game. The hubris of a vampire was in proportion with their reputation. Every night I tied my ankle to the bedstead, thrashed in uneasy sleep knowing that my family could be murdered. Jane and Simon were gone; there was no reason for Angela to hunt me until she was thirsty again – if draining me had been her plan. Her way of 'winning' this game.

More of Scone's horticulture continued to mysteriously die. The suspicion and fear was truly peaking. With my histrionics I left the house every day in search of her and no threat of punishment was enough to stop me. I had a map of town and circled all the hiding places appropriately dark and secret enough for a vampire to hide in. Break-and-enter became my thing. I carried around bolt-cutters and other invasive tools. The clock tower had been the first place I'd checked on the first day, but she wasn't there.

I found her in the cinema on day five of the searches.

The fact the little pot plants in their ceramic bowls were especially dead was the first thing that made me think I could be onto something. I went into their staff rooms, sneaking not too carefully, looking for a passage to a basement or attic. Theatre de Scone was a classy work of renaissance paintings and stone pillars. Painted to cover up the fact it was essentially just bricks and clapboard. And yet it was the only movie place in town, everyone went there at least a few weekends a month, and so it was big enough. Five individual theatres, a broad enough dusty attic as it turned out.

The attic door was blocked by something on the other side. There was another push-opening in a cleaner's closet. I brushed through spiderwebs and dust motes, struggling up with all my upper-body strength to see a wide expanse of tarp-covered storage, the entire perimeter of the building. The roof was triangular, the floor was criss-crossing wooden beams over plaster, an old skeletal underside of the building.

I waded through stagnant air, stepping along to the grimy roof windows where a body-sized cupboard had been laid on its side. Reaching back to unzip my bag, pulling out the wooden stake.

Tommy Phelps tried to ambush me, which I'd expected. Charging with a roar to where I stood in the open, holding a metal fireplace poker, either to whack or spear me with the end. This time it was before midday, I had ample of time. And obviously Tommy's co-ordination wasn't what it used to be, he tripped on one of the beams mid-chase and speared his own shoulder. The ferocity of his snarling didn't hide the urgency - like Angela he hadn't believed I'd find them again. I clubbed him repeatedly with an old typewriter, the buttons pinging as I crushed his head. His zombified body lay in twitches, trying to crawl without eyes to see.

I staggered back at the splattering of congealed blood. Whimpering at the gore but making myself turn back to the toppled cupboard. No other zombie guards. Only the living zombies, like Tommy, were independent enough to move while their vampire slept. My friend Jane had been a victim of Angela's hunger. She was one of the dried-out puppets kept around in these boxes or wardrobes.

I kneeled by the cupboard, tears streaking down my face. Wooden spike raised in a quivering hand, I flung open one of the doors. Angela Preakers's body was contorted to fit inside. Her head and limbs were bunched in an unnatural way, there was enough sunlight from the windows above for me to make out those smooth, alien features. Her red eyes flicked open like a doll coming to life and she screamed in terror, squirming as she tried to bend herself away from the wooden point in the cramped space. With a flick I opened the other door.

"Don't-!" I speared her with all my might. My eyes were frenzied, her eyes bulged. Her scream became a gurgle and she continued to writhe, twisting and pattering against the wooden confines. I kept pushing on the stake with all my strength. She went slack, the whiteness of her skin faded. She became just Angela again, human and plain.

I fell back and hyperventilated for a while. Snotty sobbing and gasping chokes.

It was done. I'd saved myself and Scone in the process. Tommy's background wriggling had stopped. The Undead prom couple of our school destroyed. There was no sense of heroism. Under my shaking panic there was a mild relief. I'd need to get out of here before someone found me, but not until I could breathe again. That could take anytime up to an hour. It was done. It was done.

I didn't want to look for Jane, who was certainly dead in one of these surrounding hiding places. This upper level that smelt starkly of death. I didn't want to look for Simon, who may or may not be here. In one form or another. It didn't feel like he was here. The boy I had feelings for, the one who'd broken my heart, was still out there. Still at large.

I would have to leave all this behind me. It would be difficult to forget, or rather to actively choose not to think about it as I continued on day by day. But I would have to live my life as it were as soon as I got hold of my sanity again. In however many weeks, months...

Half-an-hour later I had enough hold on myself to do what needed to be done. That was what I'd done to get here and stop Angela. So I did what needed to be done – I got back up on my feet and made myself walk. To home. To a shower. To normality.

Thanks for reading! Thank you for the comments! Sorry this was kinda sad 😐 But I hope you enjoyed anyway! I have two more novellas and am not sure if I should start putting the next one up immediately or not 🤔 Thanks again!

Copyright © 2020 Invnarcel; All Rights Reserved.

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Are your other novellas related to this story?  I'd love to know more. What happened to Simon?  Who made Angela?  I feel bad for Jane :(  It's sad Peter got his heart broken, but now he can focus on the future... hopefully with someone not wanting to become one of the undead :P  

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6 minutes ago, Valkyrie said:

Are your other novellas related to this story?

They aren't.  However I once did try to write a sequel for this story and wrote about... maybe four chapters. It was set some years in the future.

This first story was partly inspired by a high school crush that cracked my heart in a similar way.  But the later sequel is about a different crush and rather toxic feelings that I have since not wanted to write about.  So alas that sequel remains incomplete.

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Hubris typically leads to a bad end. I'm still dumbfounded by Peter's lack of real preparation to deal with Tommy. A typewriter? Really? Surely he would have had a crowbar among his burglary tools.

It will take a long time to leave this nightmare behind. If Simon was successful,  he will be off punishing some bullies before long.

 

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Sorry but I'm disappointed (not in the story, I LOVED the story) just sad that it was so short I wasn't prepared for the ending.

I hope Peter finds someone to love him like he "loved" Simon, he deserves that after all he's been through and all that he has lost.

As far as Simon I'm on the fence about how I feel about him....... 

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While I thought the story was well written with interesting characters and good pacing; the ending came so out of no where; that I just don't know how I feel about the story overall.  I did like how Peter took it upon himself to end Angela; and Tommy and the rest by doing so.  I think in a way he knew that Simon wasn't going to stick around; either Angela was going to direct him to the master or he was going to go off and try to find him on his own.  

Wish we could have gotten a little more of what was going on around Peter and how everyone handled what happened and the other disappearances.  

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2 hours ago, centexhairysub said:

Wish we could have gotten a little more of what was going on around Peter and how everyone handled what happened and the other disappearances.  

Exactly, I feel like there is still more to be told...more that needs to be said, I just wasn't ready for the story to end 😭😭 

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I agree it could have been taken further. Angela was basically a fledgling vampire, but already knew how to use a good range of powers. One we didn't see was only taking a little blood from a victim and binding them to her to do her bidding. Such people would be more useful than a zombie.

I wouldn't mind a sequel where Simon returns and doesn't want to hurt Peter, but resume their friendship/relationship. Since Vlad has brides, presumably vampires still have active sex lives even as the undead.

 

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Thank you guys!  Sorry that the ending was abrupt for some of you. I mentioned on my profile that my novellas are roughly ten chapters each.  They're each around 30,000 words.

1 hour ago, drpaladin said:

One we didn't see was only taking a little blood from a victim and binding them to her to do her bidding.

This would have been useful.  Would have just been one of the powers fledgling Angela hadn't learnt yet.

1 hour ago, drpaladin said:

I wouldn't mind a sequel where Simon returns and doesn't want to hurt Peter, but resume their friendship/relationship.

 

9 hours ago, Valkyrie said:

I'd love to know more. What happened to Simon?

I'll try to give you guys some closure then based on what I've written of the sequel.  I may finish it one day, but it is incomplete.  And also dark.

Anyway... after the events of Necromancer Peter tries to go back to life as normal and forget, obviously it's hard for him. Simon follows the directions given to him by Angela, as she wanted better friends than mere puppet zombies. Simon goes off to find Vlad, a much older vampire who becomes aware that Angela is dead. While she was having an early "rebellious phase" Vlad always assumed he'd have his wife return someday, so he wants Peter dead. Simon agrees to hunt down Peter on Vlad's behalf if he's changed.  Vlad agrees...

It is maybe two years later when Simon finally tracks him down.  Peter is living in a new town, his adult life underway.  He's renting, working and studying college.  He's had a string of unhealthy relationships but is now going fairly steady in a relationship that sadly isn't satisfying him.  Setting the stage for Simon's return...

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6 hours ago, Invnarcel said:

Thank you guys!  Sorry that the ending was abrupt for some of you. I mentioned on my profile that my novellas are roughly ten chapters each.  They're each around 30,000 words.

This would have been useful.  Would have just been one of the powers fledgling Angela hadn't learnt yet.

 

I'll try to give you guys some closure then based on what I've written of the sequel.  I may finish it one day, but it is incomplete.  And also dark.

Anyway... after the events of Necromancer Peter tries to go back to life as normal and forget, obviously it's hard for him. Simon follows the directions given to him by Angela, as she wanted better friends than mere puppet zombies. Simon goes off to find Vlad, a much older vampire who becomes aware that Angela is dead. While she was having an early "rebellious phase" Vlad always assumed he'd have his wife return someday, so he wants Peter dead. Simon agrees to hunt down Peter on Vlad's behalf if he's changed.  Vlad agrees...

It is maybe two years later when Simon finally tracks him down.  Peter is living in a new town, his adult life underway.  He's renting, working and studying college.  He's had a string of unhealthy relationships but is now going fairly steady in a relationship that sadly isn't satisfying him.  Setting the stage for Simon's return...

The ending was definitely rushed.  This novella could easily be expanded into a novel, should you ever feel the inclination.  It's totally understandable to not want to revisit finished works, though.  I don't tend to do that myself.  I really like the outline you've presented for the sequel and would encourage you to finish it, provided your muse cooperates.  Thank you for sharing it :) 

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I suppose in my mind, and wanting to capture realism, it made sense to me that this could be a place where it would end. If I'd continued it there'd be no Simon and thus no romance. Today I've actually been rereading those four chapters I wrote for the sequel... I haven't read them in a while so it's nostalgic, especially when I remember the emotions I was basing it off...

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8 minutes ago, Invnarcel said:

I suppose in my mind, and wanting to capture realism, it made sense to me that this could be a place where it would end. If I'd continued it there'd be no Simon and thus no romance. Today I've actually been rereading those four chapters I wrote for the sequel... I haven't read them in a while so it's nostalgic, especially when I remember the emotions I was basing it off...

I think you chose good place for it to end, with Peter killing Angela and not knowing what happened to Simon.  It leaves room for a sequel.  When I say the ending is rushed, I mean we could have seen more of Peter's hunt for Angela and the toll it took on him, along with the reactions of his friends and family.  Jane disappeared, so there would have been buzz in the school and maybe a rift between Peter and the rest of his friends since he knew what happened to her.  What you have here is good, but could have been expanded on a bit more.  I still enjoyed the story, though, so please don't think I didn't like it.  

So has re-reading those chapters inspired your muse?  :)  

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25 minutes ago, Valkyrie said:

I think you chose good place for it to end, with Peter killing Angela and not knowing what happened to Simon.  It leaves room for a sequel.  When I say the ending is rushed, I mean we could have seen more of Peter's hunt for Angela and the toll it took on him, along with the reactions of his friends and family.  Jane disappeared, so there would have been buzz in the school and maybe a rift between Peter and the rest of his friends since he knew what happened to her.  What you have here is good, but could have been expanded on a bit more.  I still enjoyed the story, though, so please don't think I didn't like it.  

So has re-reading those chapters inspired your muse?  :)  

My thoughts also.

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28 minutes ago, Valkyrie said:

So has re-reading those chapters inspired your muse?  :)  

I'm at work now and it's quiet (I do night shift). I'm on the work computer having just finished rereading.  Now I got an A4 paper in front of me and have jotted down in pen plot points for a second part.  Another six chapters and epilogue.  I may continue after all BUT I'm busy with Uni and also don't want to upload anything until it's done, in case I do editing and change the earlier chapters. I like these ideas but it's hella dark.

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