Monday, 23 April 2007

Chapter 44: Unwanted Visitors

A loud clang of metal bolts echoed around the entrance hall as the huge wooden doors to the clan’s headquarters were flung open by Luca Salazar. The heat from outside tainted the cool atmosphere from the stone walls inside and the resident vampires were quick to close the doors once Salazar’s squad of five vampires entered the main hall.

Marcus and Roxy emerged from a dark corridor at the opposite end of the hall to meet their visitors. Marcus reluctantly shook hands with Salazar and they nodded to each other, their mutual hatred thinly veiled by an air of civility.

‘Good evening, Luca,’ said Marcus, ‘welcome back to our headquarters.’

It had been a long time since the Deputy Lord Chancellor had visited Marcus Verrico’s clan. The Lord Chancellor himself had never visited. He very rarely visited the clans, primarily for security reasons but also to retain his threatening air of mystery.

‘I bring best wishes from the Lord Chancellor,’ Salazar said, ‘He wishes you and your clan all the best in the timely recovery of Doctor Owen.’

Marcus had only met the Lord Chancellor twice in his undead lifetime but he had been in his service for long enough to know the true meaning of his sentiment.

Find the doctor tonight or your clan is finished. Find him or
you are finished.

‘We know where the doctor is being held,’ said Marcus, ‘We are gathering our forces together and we are poised to launch an attack as soon as I give the word. Please follow me through to our dining hall where we can feast and toast the successful return of Doctor Owen.’

‘Thank you,’ Salazar said, ‘but what makes you think this attack will be more successful than any other? The mortals are well trained and well armed.’

‘With respect sir, I must correct you there; that is only partially correct. They are well trained and well armed for a small attack. They believe there are very few of our brothers and sisters in the local area but tonight we will show them our true potential.’

The serious look on Marcus’ face told the Deputy Lord Chancellor that he meant business.

‘Sounds like you have everything in hand,’ Salazar said, trying not to show he was impressed with the Marcus’ ambition. He waved a hand towards the dining hall, ‘Lead the way, Marcus.’

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