Nathaniel’s Private E-Journal, January 1st, 2005 “Reflections and Looking Forward”


I’m standing on a deck overlooking the great wide Pacific Ocean.  Another year has passed but I am not alone.  I am surrounded by members of my extended family located in Aptos, California.  Although that’s not where I am at this moment.  We’re standing near the famed Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk having just watched a fabulous fireworks display out on the water.

The Cloudfoots have been part of my life since 1999 when I first met Jason, the patriarch of these wonderful people.  As their name implies, they are of Native American descent, specifically they are Seneca one of the five original tribes that formed the Iroquois Confederacy.

Together, Jason and I, along with Otto located his missing niece Julie who had run away from home just two days before Christmas.  The moment Jason and I locked eyes, I knew there was something different about him and I was right.  He was a shaman, one who knew about the Para-Earths, as Otto has named those alternate realities of this world.  Jason also knew right away I’d been to one and had come back changed, but he also knew I was still a good man and our friendship formed.

He’s here with me tonight enjoying the love and joy of his children and grandchildren.  Jason lost his wife two years ago, for which I was very sorry.  She had been a wonderful woman, warm and caring.  I’d spent that New Year’s Eve with him, to make sure he did not face it alone.  Not that I had much reason to worry.  Julie and her parents were there as well.  It was the first time I’d seen her in 1999 and my how she’d grown.  From the pudgy little girl I’d help locate, she was now slightly taller than me and still growing.  She also had filled out in more ways than one, especially in the muscle department.  I feel sorry for any boy who pissed her off.  Not that she seems very interested in them.  A part of me suspects her yearnings lie elsewhere.  I just hope I never have to compete with her for a date.

Not that such a thing is likely.  I’ve kept to myself more since Veronica and I parted company three years ago.  I’ve found myself thinking about her a lot tonight.  Probably it’s because of all the police officers watching over tonight’s festivities.  There was one female officer in particular standing near her patrol car that caught my eye.  She looked nothing like Veronica, but the way the officer stood there reminded me so much of my red-headed love.

 

God she was amazing.  It’s not often you find someone so passionate and dedicated, not only to you but to her work.  But I digress…

A new year stands before us all.  I have no idea what surprises this one will have in store for me or those I call ‘family’.  But I know I will not face this new year alone which is a great comfort.  I have people like Jason, Otto, Brian, their families and so many others who’s lives touch mine.  I think that’s been the greatest gift of all.  Even though I have outlived so many people who I’ve loved, I am never truly alone.  And because I remember, none of them are ever forgotten.

My existence is a strange one, but at least I find it serves so many others.

Jason is proposing another toast to all so I better wrap this up.  A promising new year awaits and I for one am looking forward to seeing what it has to offer.

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Lisa’s Private Thoughts, December 19th, 2012 – Christmas Tree Time

Tonight we got our Christmas tree.  Some of you may may think we’d left it a bit late, but since I’m a December baby, my parents got into the habit of waiting until after my birthday to put up any Christmas decorations.  One of my mother’s sisters was also a December baby who often complain about how her birthday got overshadowed by Christmas, so my parents go out of their way to make sure that did not happen with me.  Especially not this year when I turned sixteen.

But that had been over a week ago and I was more than ready for Christmas now.  In fact, I’m thinking of telling my parents next year that we should get our tree the day after Thanksgiving.  We could just decorate it for my birthday and then redo it again for Christmas.

You see I love the smell of pine trees and forests.  Especially in wintertime and at night.  Which is why going out to get our tree was so much fun this time.  As soon as dinner was over, Dad told us to get our coats and pile into the Suburban.  “It’s tree time!” he smiled.

“More like about time,” Mom muttered under her breath, while getting her coat on in record time.

Soon we were driving down a snowy lane with snow covered trees on either side of us.  There was no one else on the road, so it felt kind of spooky in some ways.  I swear, there’s nothing like being surrounded by huge trees at night to make you feel really small.  Yet it was beautiful at the same time.

After a while Mom said, “Where are going?  There aren’t any tree lots out this way.”

“We’re getting our tree the old fashion way, straight out of the best supplier known to man.  The forest itself,” Dad smiled.

“We’re going to chop one down?” I cried in dismay.

“No, Sweetie, we’re going to dig one up,” Dad corrected me.  “Remember, cut trees don’t last very long around Uncle Nate.”

Immediately, my mood skyrocketed even higher.  “He’s coming this year?”

“Dear, you weren’t supposed to say anything,” Mom scolded.

“She was going to find out anyway,” he told her,  “See, that’s him up ahead waiting for us.”

I practically climbed into the front seat with them to get a better look.  Sure enough, in a clearing up ahead stood Nathan wearing a an old fashion burgundy frock coat, with a black cape over it.  While on top of his blonde hear, he had a black beaver hat angled every so slightly to give him a dashing look.

By now my little brother Geoffrey, who had been sleeping the whole time woke up and started yelling, “Unca Nate… Unca Nate…” at the top of his little lungs.  If you haven’t guessed, he adores our godfather.

Luckily we were able to park quickly and got him out of the car.  Since I was right next to him, I ‘fun’ of getting him out of his car-seat.  Let me tell you, trying to deal with an overexcited two-year old who won’t stop squirming is an experience I won’t soon forget.  Nor will my stomach where he kept kicking me without realizing it, because he wanted to get to Nathan so badly.

Thank goodness Nathan saw my plight and took Geoffrey from me.  Immediately, my baby brother calmed down and started babbling at him in a mix of words and childish gibberish.  Mom and Dad looked on with amusement while Nathan hung on my brother’s every ‘word’ until he was finished.

“Well you certainly have had an interesting day,” Nathan told him, “I look forward to having more of these talks with you over the coming days.  But for now, we need to find a good tree and we have lots to choose from.”

Looking around I saw he was right.  We did have a lot of choices, but there was one slight problem.  “Kind of big aren’t they?” my Mom remarked, taking Geoffrey from him.

Nathan turned to my dad the two began muttering to one another.  I managed to catch a few snippets like: “I thought you said she’d be okay with punching a holes into the ceiling and possibly the roof…”  and  “….we’d have had to cut through some of the crossbeams and…”

I noticed Mom rolling her eyes several times before they finally finished.

Clapping his gloved hands Dad said, “Nathan says there’s some really nice trees over on the north slope just a few hundred yards from here. I just need to get the sled and pot out from the back of the car.”

“Did you remember the shovels?” Mom asked, and he froze.

Immediately my father froze and winced.  “Oops.”

“Dad!” I cried but Nathan intervened saying, “Don’t worry, I’ve got it covered.  Just follow me.”  and with that he started heading off towards the north slope.

Naturally I raced to join him.  Soon the whole family was following close behind as we slowly made our way through the snowy woods.

At one point we spotted some deer nearby, who did not seem to mind our presence at all.  They stared at us for a while, until they were sure we didn’t have anything to offer them and then moved on.  Soon we emerged from the forest and into what was undoubtedly the north slope.

All around us stood pines ranging from four feet to heaven knows, all covered in snow.  It was a beautiful sight.  I almost felt guilty for our intruding on such a festive scene.  But, we were here on a mission and I knew weren’t going to leave until we located and secured our quarry.

After a few minutes, of knocking snow off a few of the six foot trees, my parents found one they liked.  I had to agree, that their choice was a good one.  It had a lovely shape and would fit nicely in the living room.  But first we had to get it out of the ground.

Turning to Nathan I said, “So how do you plan to get this puppy out of the ground without shovels?”

Smiling he said, “Funny you should mention the word ‘puppy’.”  With that he took a few steps away from me and knelt down in the snow, covering himself entirely with the black cloak.  For several seconds nothing happened.  Then there was movement under the ebony cloth and soon two large black dogs emerged from underneath the cape which fell to the ground and became flat.

“PUPPIES!” my little brother cried excitedly.  He loves dogs, but can’t play with them because he’s very allergic to their fur.  A part of me quickly surmised that this would not be a problem with these two beasts.  As if to prove my point, they went over to where my mother was holding Geoffrey, and allowed him to pet them.

Then the pair trotted over to where the tree we’d chosen stood and began digging in a circle.  Snow went flying in all directions, making the rest of us take a few steps back to keep out of range.  But soon, the dark soil began to replace the white stuff letting us know the real work had begun.  Out of curiosity I bent down and picked up a piece of the thrown soil and found it was still quite solid and frozen.

I shook my head in wonder and marveled at the power of my godfather once more.  I’ve long known of his shape-shifting talents, but sometimes forget just how much strength he is capable of demonstrating.

  

Within minutes the tree wobbles and tilts to one side, as the two dogs emerge from behind it and slip back under the black coat from which they’d emerged.  As my father brings the sled with the big pot on it near the tree, I watch the shapes moving beneath the cape and breathe a sigh of relief when I see hands appear and Nathan stands up.  As he readjusted his hat, I could see that there’s not a speck of anywhere on his hands or face.  He truly is a wonder to behold sometimes.

Anyway, he and Dad managed to lift the tree with its large ball of dirt and roots, into the big pot… or rather tub on the sleigh and quickly made sure it was a good fit.  Then we headed back to the cars and stood it upright in the back of the pickup, Nathan had brought.  In a few weeks, we’ll bring it back and replant it, just as Nathan has shown us so it can continue its life among its siblings.

Two hours later, we had the tree back at home and fully decorated.  Dad has just lit the log in the fireplace, while Nathan is resting on the sofa with a blanket over his legs.  Or rather where his legs would be.  On the floor nearby, Geoffrey is playing with a couple of smaller versions of the black dogs who dug our Christmas tree out of the ground.

Poor Nathan, he’s going to be legless for a good hour or more, meaning he’ll be stuck on the sofa.  I’m going to join him after I finish this post.  He’s going to be staying with us all throughout the holidays this year.  Normally he heads to Connecticut to visit another part of his ‘extended’ family to spend Christmas Eve, but they are celebrating elsewhere this year which means he’s all mine… or rather ours this time.

Glancing over at the archway that leads to the kitchen I can see my mom and dad enjoying a good long kiss under the mistletoe.   I love seeing them like that.  It really makes the season all the more right to me.

Love, family and friends, those are the greatest gifts to have at this time of year.  And I’m going to go get a little of the first, right now.  I’ve got a little bit of mistletoe of my own in my pocket and there’s a very inviting spot right next to Nathan on the sofa.

This is going to be very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year indeed….

****So ends this year’s holiday installment of The Vampyre Blogs – Private Edition.  I hope you enjoyed it as much as I did writing it.  May all your hopes and wishes come true during this festive season.  And may each and everyone one of you enjoy some of the magic of this season.

MERRY CHRISTMAS EVERYONE

LISA’S “PRIVATE THOUGHTS” – OCTOBER 22ND, 2014 “Something Bad Is Coming” Part – II

town

While I continue to watch the land slowly being bathed by the morning’s rays, the leading edge of the light begins to touch the edge of the dairy farm and halts.  Well, not exactly.  The light continues to stretch across the land, but it does so by going AROUND a portion of the farm, in particular the barn.  It’s almost as if that area has a barrier around it, which is repelling the dawn’s rays.

At first I shake my head, wondering if my eyes are playing tricks on me.  Perhaps some trees are casting a shadow over that spot, but no.  What I’m seeing is not a shadow, it’s something else, something sinister.

 barn

As I continue to watch, the edge of sunlight slowly closes around the dark area around the barn and continues to spread across the land.  That is of course when my mind starts thinking about Timothy Spratt and what my father had told me.  At this point I’ve usually woken up.  But last night the dream kept going.

Tearing my gaze away from the ‘shadowed’ barn I begin to study the rest of the town, to see if the effect is repeated anywhere else.  To my horror, it does.  Here and there, I notice a few other ‘blemishes’ appear in other parts of the town.  But the pattern is so sporadic, there does not appear to be any rhyme or reason to their locations.  It’s as if all that lay before me was a painting and someone had flicked a brush covered in some dark translucent stain across a canvas, marring the beauty of the scene.

None of it seems to make any sense… that is until the light reaches the grounds of the church.  It’s there that I see a much more heavy concentration of dark spots, mostly around a number of headstones in the newer sections of the graveyard.  Immediately I remember the Professor, I mean Otto, telling me and Marisa that the Ghoul-Slime… or Funus Sobrere (which is latin Corpse Absorber… see I’m already learning from him) preferred bodies of the recently deceased.

       This of course reinforces my first impression that Tim Spratt may have been one of the creature’s earliest victims, having seen the darkness around the barn.  But at the same time it doesn’t explain why I’m being shown this ‘overview’ of the town.  Are all these blemishes places where the Funus Sobrere had been?  And if so, why was there no other reports of people/animals dying or disappearing?

Then, as if in answer to my unspoken question my eyes drift, seemingly of their own volition, away from the church grounds to one of the other larger buildings in shadows.  It’s one of the medical buildings over on Clearwater Street.  Specifically, it’s the one that contains the local diagnostic lab.  I’ve had bloodwork done there and so has pretty much everyone in town.  There have been no deaths there that I can recall… then I remember the place had a break in and samples stolen…

Including ones that belonged to Marisa’s dad, which would explain how “Ghoul-Boy”… I mean the Funus Sorbrere knew about her father’s condition when it confronted us.  A chill runs through my body at the realization that the creature had actively been seeking out who would make a nice fresh corpse in the near future for it to absorb.

‘But the thing is dead,’ I tell myself in the dream.  ‘Tony… Pastor Gregory’s brother, who it had taken over, had destroyed himself and it in fire.  It’s gone, we’re all safe… right?’

By then a feeling of doom has taken hold and I look back to the rest of the town which has now been completely revealed, blemishes and all, by the morning sun.  All is quiet… almost too quiet.

Then I see the edges of each dark patch begin to move.  It’s a slow but steady movement.  Those closest to each other meet and become a larger patch and continue to spread, seemingly more rapidly because of their greater size.  In the churchyard this happens more quickly, since so many of the graves had been violated and tainted by the Funus Sorbrere.

I’m rooted to the spot, helpless to stop the progression as the blight spreads darkening more and more of my hometown.  Then I notice the farthest edge of the encroaching shadow begins begins to reach the outer edge of Nathan’s family estate and stops.

“Of course, Nathan was able to beat it to a standstill back in the cemetery when he came to save me and Marisa,” I breathe with the first rays of hope.  Then I remember he’s gone to ground… “Which means he’s not here to protect us,” I murmur sadly.

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     And that’s when the nightmare really begins.

     It’s almost as if the blight heard my words, because suddenly the darkness spreads like a wildfire.  It crashes past whatever was holding it back from my godfather’s estate, sweeping over it cause plants to die and trees to wither.  The manor itself begins to darken and age just before collapsing in on itself, while my hometown is swept in shadow and I hear the first screams of terror arise…

     That’s when I finally woke up to find the screams were coming from my own mouth.   Naturally my parents came rushing into my room to find out what had happened, and then spent the next hour comforting me.  Both kept reassuring me that there had been no new reports of graves being violated or disappearances of people or animals.  Still, I can’t help shaking the feeling that something is coming and I’m certain Nathan will be our only chance of stopping it.

      I can’t tell Marisa about the dream because I know she’s been anxious about her dad.  She and her Mom are waiting for the latest lab results to come back and I don’t want to burden her with my worries.  I’d talk to Otto but he’s out of town.  I could e-mail him, but first I want to go to Nathan’s place and check on Isabella’s grave, where he went to ground with her ghost, to see if there’s any change.  If I don’t see anything, then I’ll contact Otto for sure and ask what I should do next.

       Damn, almost time for school.  I’ll wrap things up here and report back once I’ve been to Nathan’s place this evening.  I pray this is all just my imagination but if it isn’t and there’s no sign of him coming back, I don’t know what we’ll do.