Episode 3: The Fire Rises
Galen and the Constable did not stay long, knowing the police and fire crews would arrive. They would have to wait and have the Chamberlain pull whatever strings were required for a cover up.
The next evening Tristan headed off to follow up a clue. It had come to his attention that one of the cleaners hired to work at the club had not been in, yet they had checked in via the swipe card back entrance. Tristan headed off into the suburbs to figure out what had happened.
Arriving at the council apartment block Tristan was not surprised to see how run down it was. Barely any of the street lights worked, there were the sounds of sirens from whatever gang related violence was taking place, and there was a gang of youths in the main plaza of the block. As Tristan approach the gang, kids no older than 15, dressed in sports gear, hoodies, knockoff trainers and obviously they had been smoking weed, got up off the benches and wall where they were gathered and as a group blocked Tristan.
‘’ere what we got ‘ere? We got some flash poofter, innit? What you want round here mister? You gotta answer to us? We rulez this place?’ The leader of the group got in Tristan’s face. People in the flats watched from above, wondering if they will have the call the police or an ambulance.
Tristan snarled, the Beast itching for a fight, channeling the Blood, his eyes dilating and wild, his vampiric aura igniting. ‘Why don’t you lot just get the fuck out of here!’
The group of kids looked at each other, laughter dying, and as a group backed away and walked quickly from Tristan, never once looking back.
Tristan made his way up the stairwell, choosing not to use the dilapidated lift. There was the stench of rotting food, crisp packets littering the stairs, and of course the sound of rats and the stink of piss. He made his way down the balcony to the apartment and knocked. There was no sound from within and no reply. His knocked again and then tried the bell. Concerned Tristan felt vitae course through his veins and he kicked at the door, and once again, causing it to break open. Once inside he found nothing special. A typical flat with no decoration, peeling wallpaper, and a tiny TV. The kitchen stank of days old food, and then in the bedroom he found the cleaner. They had been tied up like a pig for slaughter. Wary of some trap Tristan ungaged the man. The man pleaded to be let go, and as he was freed he quickly made his way to the bathroom, before returning to speak to Tristan. It turned out to be as they had all feared. Hunters.
Galen return that night to the scene of the fire, and headed into the basement. It was clear that any bodies that were there had been cleared away, and the news had just reported this as an instance of arson by youths. Galen searched around, and lifting up a sheet of metal, beneath he found a symbol written in blood. It was the the chi rho of the Lancea Sanctum. But as Galen went to take a picture he found that it was now the greek symbol to the star sign Taurus.
Galen returned to his haven and headed to his basement where he tried to make sense of it all and emailed his findings to the Chamberlain. It was while do some research on Mithras, and putting together his police scanner, that a gust of wind blew over somethings, causing a candle to land on a map of the city. It scorched a mark, a point on the map where Galen knew there was a church, and a Lancea Sanctum meeting place. As he held the map up the mark continued to burn, burning a Taurus symbol. But in the back of his mind he heard the words of his spirit guide, Kaiman, saying ‘Do not trust the shadows cast by false flames’.
Galen raced to the church. It was a Sunday, and he knew that the Sanctified would be holding mass. When he arrived things were already spiralling out of control. He got out of his car and approached. As he got to the wall of the churchyard he peered over and watched as Rachel Witten sealed the door with a plank of wood. At her feet were two decapitated figures. She then stepped back and lit a match. A circle of flames rose up around the church, and as she approach it, the flames turned green before grow higher, hotter, and more fierce. And as she stepped back the flames returned yellow. Galen tried to get closer, but made a noise. Witten turned, and scooped up a ball of flame and hurled it at Galen. He ran, leaping over the church wall and over the hood of his car. His jacked caught fire as the green flames licked around the vehicle. Galen ran for cover away from the car as another ball of balefire slammed into it, causing the car to ignite.
Rachel returned to the church, and the fire, and once more the flames turned green and grew in intensity. Inside there were screams, and the sounds of glass shattering. With the fire now high enough and strong enough Rachel stepped back and watched the fire return to a yellow orange as it began to consume the church.
Rachel however had not noticed that Galen was still alive. Galen had sneaked up, and taken a wooden cross from a new grave, and went to impale her. The stake pierced into her back, but did not go all the way through. Rachel, in pain, turned around and brandished her sword, a replica of a Roman short sword, and struck back, slicing into Galen’s side and leg. But Galen was now lost to t
he Beast, and his urge to feed and kill her was overwhelming. He lunged forward, knocking Rachel to the ground, and repeatedly stabbing her in the chest with the stake, before ramming it through her heart. With her now in torpor Galen drank in her blood and her soul. He looked up, his face red with blood, and he watched as the flames about the church flared and the building collapsed.
Hearing the police sirens Galen escaped, taking the sword and rooting through Rachel’s pockets to find her car keys.