by Shirin Dubbin
Adrenalin pumped a steady rhythm in Scarlet’s ears. Twirling her custom set of stakes she speared vampire after vampire, in sync with the pumping of her blood, leaving motes of dust on the night air. The mahogany weapons bore points sharpened to deadly and had been blessed by a pastor, a priest, an imam, a rabbi and a guru. (The girl liked covering her bases.) Hell, she’d even had her favorite baker dust them with cocoa powder. For Scarlet—formerly known as Rose Red—chocolate-mocha-almond-double-fudge cupcakes were a religion. Amen and hallelujah.
Shoot! A vamp scored her lipstick red motorcycle jacket with a five-talon strike. Keep your head in the game girl. Moonlight glinted off the offender’s long fanged grin. Scarlet hop kicked, smashing a steel toe boot into his chin and, following the move, impaled the sucker on the point of a stake. He fractured into dust.
Note: soon as this ordeal ended and her man was safe she’d be headed straight to the pastry alter for some chocolate healing. It wasn’t blasphemy. Scarlet had migrated to this dimension from the Realm of Fairytales where witchcraft was a daily occurrence and casting spells happened as often as saying good mornin’. She and religion were still getting to know one another.
Uppercut. Spin. Kick.
She’d hated living in the Fairytale realm. Girls from the HEA behaved like perfect ladies…or else. Plus, all the men over that side were preening princes, pompous knights or doddering old coots. Over this side she got to be an ass-kicking chick. If her famous sister, Snow, could see her now she’d smack a dwarf and spew apple bits.
Three more vamps went down beneath Scarlet’s whirling stakes.
His scent lit her senses before the man came into view. Blue. She smiled. He burst through the door and onto the roof, taking out vamps with a wooden sword sharp enough to cut a second into two. Blue knew how to make an entrance and Scarlet loved the way he moved.
“Woo weeee! Do it babe!” she hollered as he pivoted his rodeo lean body and took the heads off the vamps encircling him.
They’d been separated for going on two days. Seemed he’d followed the clues to the warehouse same as she had. A happy exhale. She dusted another vamp. She’d missed him something terrible. With things as bad as they were she’d had to face the possibility of never seeing him alive again. She couldn’t live with that.
She loved this man.
In her realm, his counterpart had been called Bluebeard, a stone cold wife killer. She’d tangled with that snake herself but took to dimension hopping before becoming wife number seven. Things were different here. In the Realm of Blood and Darkness he was good ole Blue, a navy haired, vamp slaying machine and body-rocking lover of the first degree.
Amendment to her earlier note: soon as this ordeal ended and her man was safe she’d run straight to the church of Blue for some sexual healing. Amen and hallelujah.
“I’m guessing you’ve got the totem?” he shouted across the moonlit rooftop, beginning to cut a path to her.
“Yep. Beat you to it.” A smile. “Sure seems like they want it back though.”
“Desperately,” he chuckled.
“Well, they can’t have it. You need it to live an’ I need you.”
He winked, punched a vamp so hard its fangs embedded in the wall behind them then cut another into thirds.
What a man.
Damn the vampire princess who’d cursed him. An’ all cause he wouldn’t sire half-vamp, half-slayer babies with her. He just wasn’t the kind of man who dreamed of ruling the world. It was enough for Blue to keep his corner of it safe.
Arcing beads of blood caught the moonlight and her attention. Swinging round she noticed the ragged wound in his abdomen. Desperation to get to him kicked in.
“Tis only a flesh wound,” he tossed back in his best Monty Python, impaling vamps on rapid lunges.
“No,” she said, “You’re slowing down.” She pulled the dragon totem from the inside pocket of her jacket. A vamp took the opportunity and pounced, looking to remove her head. Scarlet ducked and its talons sliced the band holding her ponytail in place instead. A mantle of garnet hued tresses floated down past her shoulders. The vamp paid for the hairstyling with its unlife.
“Catch!” a four-talon swipe opened her cheek. She ignored it and drew back to toss Blue the little dragon sculpture. (The only thing that would save him)
One second more and she would have made it.
Vamp physics flooded onto the roof and blew the pair to opposite corners. To her credit Scarlet held on to the totem, steeling herself against the blow as she hit the stone ledge. Blue skidded across the rooftop leaving a trail of blood behind and coughing up more as he slowed. He needed the totem to restore his nigh-invulnerability and he needed it now.
“Babe!” she screamed throwing the sculpture with dead accuracy. The vamps dove, seeming to freeze in mid-air, as the sculpture hurled end over end towards its target. One sucker came a hair from intercepting. Blue kicked him in the gut, reached up and caught the little dragon at the same moment a horde of vamps buried him beneath a pile-on tackle.
Scarlet leapt to her feet, scooped up one of her stakes and hightailed it to her love’s aid. A rumbling roar brought her to a sliding stop. Blue shot up from beneath the pile, sending vamps flying to the four winds and cutting them down before they hit the ground.
Oh yeah, he had his powers back. She took out the turn-tails and physics with only one thing on her mind.
Blue dusted the final vamp and ran toward her. They met halfway in an explosion of sparks. He laughed spinning her round and round. All the while staring into her eyes. Anticipation skyrocketed. The kiss he laid on her was so amazing it set her blood to boiling and seared her right down to the soles of her feet. Woo weeee… Steam built up inside her boots. Two seconds later the steel toes blew right off them and went sailing over the ledge. Two more seconds and the couple achieved lift off. Floating in lazy circles they continued to devour one another, setting off rapturous bursts of light. Amen and hallelujah.
Folks all over the city woke up, looked out their windows and swore the Fourth had come early this year. Some saw lovers silhouetted against the moon. And the music? They all heard that.
“This kiss, this kiss. Unstoppable.” Bliss.
Inspiration: This Kiss by Faith Hill
Hope you liked SFALS: This Kiss. If so look out for my urban fantasy romance, Keeper of the Way
17 April 2009
by Shirin Dubbin