20 - Vampire the Masquerade
DescriptionMaking a Friend
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Making a FriendThere was a ramp, for moving cars between floors, at the rear of the basement. There was a stairway at the front. I moved to the ramp and decided to use that. Hearing two Sabbat speaking made me change my mind. They were standing at the top of the ramp, probably guarding it. As I crossed the basement, I discovered a few old wooden pallets. A thought, possibly Malkavian intuition, entered my mind. I broke the pallets into five stakes. They just might come in handy. Then I loaded my shotgun with the new pumpkin ball ammunition Mercurio had given me. I made my way up the stairs and had a clear view of the two Sabbat goons. They were standing at the bottom of another ramp, in roughly the same area, that led to the second floor. These guys were real assholes. They were laughing and joking, saying how great it was to be a bad-assed vampire. They were saying how they were going to kick Camarilla and Anarch ass and then feed as much as they wanted. The funny thing was, they were making enough noise to wake the dead. In my case, the dead were wide-awake. Well, in this case, the undead. And neither one of them had detected my presence. That is sloppy for any vampire. I looked around. The first floor was once an auto repair shop. I found a case of cans of some sort of fluid and grabbed one. Then I crept very close to the pair. I rolled a can across the floor. "What the fuck was that?" one said. "Came from over there," said the other. "Go and check it out." "You go and check it out!" I chuckled. This would be easy. The one guy walked toward the can, now stopped by a stack of old tires. I charged behind him and tapped him on the shoulder. When he turned, I grabbed one of my wooden stakes. Below the sternum, and then up. Straight into the heart. He collapsed. The other one watched me stake his buddy and then he shouted and charged. The dumb shit ran right onto the stake I had ready for him. He collapsed as well. I decided to keep using the stairs. I crept up the stairs to the second floor, and found myself behind a bunch of old cars, collecting dust. On the other side of the floor was what appeared to be a lab of some sort or another. The black vampire was sitting by the girl, acting protective. The old white guy was standing beside the lab equipment. The three Sabbat were facing the trio, with the elephant of the group in the rear. The good-looking Sabbat was talking. "Wesley," he said, "the Sabbat embraced you because we thought you would be of value to us. We felt you would help us. Instead, you have managed to turn on us. That was wrong, and you must be punished. It has taken us a while to find you, but punishment happens tonight." "Fuck you," the black guy said. He was Wesley. "We will embrace your sister, Wesley," the Sabbat said. "She will become one of us. Then, we will perform Diablerie on you. Your sister will consume your blood." Diablerie. Jack had told me the Sabbat did that. The practice of draining another vampire, in the belief that you will gain their power. The selected vampire suffers Final Death. The Camarilla and Anarchs considered this cannibalism, and worthy of a Blood Hunt. The trio was holding the young girl, who I now knew as Wesley"s sister and still human, over his head. Once again, my Malkavian intuition poked me. I readied my shotgun. I walked, well, really more like a graceful dance, toward the big Sabbat standing guard. None of the three Sabbat had detected me. Wesley did. He looked right at me, and he did not say a word. He was on my side, or about to be. BOOM! BOOM! Two rounds went into the big guy"s head. He turned to flame and smoke before he ever hit the floor. What hit the floor were his bones and some dust. Mercurio was right about these pumpkin balls. This was not the first time I would be grateful I had let him live. "Well, now," I said. "Two vampires against two vampires. That makes things a bit more even. I don"t count humans in a vampire fight." "You shit!" the woman shouted, pulling a knife. "Camarilla shit!" "Leave it to a dumbass Sabbat to bring a knife to a gun fight," I said. I shouldn"t have said anything. She moved quickly, and held the knife at the girl"s throat. "Now what will you do, Camarilla fuck?" the guy said. I paused for a moment. Then I smiled. "I plan on doing the same thing I did to you assholes at the warehouse in Santa Monica. Watch." I looked at the female Sabbat and focused trance on her. If she were human, she would have spaced out. All I did was make her pause for a few seconds. But a few seconds were all I needed. I bounded across the floor and grabbed another stake in one motion. I whacked her on the side of the head, knocking her to the floor as she was coming out of the trance. Then I staked. The young girl got a small cut on her neck from the knife, but that was all. I began to feel pretty good. One Sabbat destroyed, and three staked. We could leave them out for the sun. The old white guy had run to the girl and embraced her. "I am a doctor," he said. "I will tend to her cut." I smiled, and looked to see the final Sabbat looking directly at me. For the first time, I had seen another vampire with fear in its eyes. I tossed a stake to Wesley, grinned, and spoke. "This one belongs to you, Wesley." Well, Wesley began fighting with the Sabbat. Herein lies the problem. My guess was that Wesley was Clan Brujah, but he didn"t fight like one. He fought like a human. In fact, he fought like a guy in a lousy Kung Fu movie. The Sabbat was kicking his butt. Wesley kept looking for an opening to use the stake, and he wasn"t getting one. I took my shotgun in hand, tripped the Sabbat, and put two rounds into his head. Flame, smoke, dust, and skeleton. All too easy. So much for vampires fighting fair. Wesley looked at me. "You"re a vampire. Why are you helping me?" he asked. I explained to Wesley about the Sabbat, the Anarchs, and the Camarilla. He hadn"t heard of any of that. I continued on about clans and the sarcophagus. Wesley displayed blissful ignorance of all of this. "Well, you really didn"t have to tell me all of that," he said. "That human man is Dr. Jenning Barton, a retired hematologist. He studies blood diseases. He will find a cure for me." "Wesley," I said, "there is only one cure. That is the Final Death. You are a vampire, and all the doctors and all the king"s men cannot make you human again. But, you can do one thing. As a vampire, it is going to be a whole lot easier for you to protect your sister. And I think you want to do that." Wesley nodded. "But I can keep trying." "Okay, Wesley," I explained, "I can understand that. Now, we have something to attend to. The stake only immobilizes. We have to get those three where the morning sun will hit them. Let daylight turn them to dust. A vampire is comatose with a stake through their heart." Wesley and I lugged the three staked Sabbat up to the roof. I filled him in on the Masquerade and some other vampire facts, and then I made him an offer. "I will stop by tomorrow night," I said. "Maybe you can help me with this sarcophagus thing I am working on. Think it over. And I can help you adjust to this life." Wesley agreed. I went back to my haven. I would spend the remainder of the month teaching more of the vampire life to Wesley. He had been feeding from blood packs that Dr. Barton would steal from local hospitals. Bad idea. I told him Barton could get caught, and arrested, and then what would happen? I told Wesley about the feeding rules of the Masquerade, and how easy it was to feed in Malibu. He had better start feeding properly. It would also give Dr. Barton more freedom to continue his research, although I seriously doubted that the well-intentioned Dr. would find a cure.