Chapter Two

She held the page out of her father's journal tightly in her hand, safe from the merciless hands of the winter wind. It constantly tried to free the yellowing scrap from her hand while she tried to read it.

Not that it mattered much, she already had it memorized. Everyone had always said that he was mad, insane, unstable... but she was prepared to prove them all wrong. The dreams she had been having could in no way be a coincidence.

Now, here she was, in front of the condemned building, one hand on the doorknob, hundreds of miles away from home. For the first time in her life, she was experiencing the sensation of paralyzing fear creeping up her spine. And also, the unusual feeling of not belonging, that is, not actually being where she was.

My God, what am I doing here? Of course I can't help thinking that. Just look at this place. It looks worse than my boyfriend's apartment. Damn, it's gonna be gross tryin' to get these cobwebs out of my hair. I don't mind touching them, but they're gonna get all clingy with my hair.

Ugh, trying to walk over around and through all this junk is bound to earn me a broken fingernail. I guess that's the price I have to pay for being stupid and brave.

There it is. Oh my, it's stranger than anyone could ever describe, and yet, so simple. Is that? Yes, it is!

I leave this report for posterity, so that they may grasp the importance of who they are, or rather, who they must be to survive in the world of the monster.

I sat down on the freezing, smooth, and disgustingly dusty steps of the altar and took the fountain pen that had been pushed through the curtain. It trembled in my nervous hand, but I knew I must steady it and what I was required to do. I was prepared to go even further. Slowly I brought the point to my right wrist, where it trembled its way across my veins, lightly scratching them. Quickly, before I could loose what little courage I had managed to scrape together, I dug it into my veins, slowly digging a deep and long canal from my wrist to my elbow, that quickly filled with a river of blood. The thing hiding behind the curtain had called out that enough had been done, but I couldn't hear and wouldn't listen and so continued to cut. I had to end it all my way, and the whole trip was nothing more than an excuse to carry out some actions I had been longing to act out for years. I took amazing comfort in the burning pain of my tears falling one by one into my beautifully bloody wounds. I wouldn't stop until I couldn't find strength to continue. When that time came, as the blood ran down my arm, and dripped into the fabric of my black pants, where they disappeared, It reached out at me. Its purple-ish arm reached through the curtain to my wrist, which it mercilessly stuck its crystalline claws into my open wrists and dragged me onto its lap. I was almost fainting, no surprise, when it began licking my wounds like a dog, lapping up whatever drop of blood was foolish enough to venture into the punctured veins of my right arm. I was so out of it, I didn't notice the strange fluid he excreted to fill my veins with, but I could feel whatever it was flowing, much faster than blood, in fact, devouring it.

When I awoke, I was at its feet, and felt bruised all over as if I had been thrown from the throne and kicked around a bit. I'm sure that's exactly what happened. It spoke. I didn't even look up, for fear.

"Look at your arm, at the wounds you so generously gave yourself in a foolish attempt to cheat me of what is mine. See how I have healed you, ungrateful wretch, and stare at the scars nothing can ever remove. They are our wedding ring. And you, my bride, will bring them all back to me. Every last human, for, as such, you were all meant to be my slaves." It took me in its unnatural, warm grip and gave me a taste of his disgusting tongue. I couldn't even bite it off in self-defense or anything. Something the saliva had paralyzed me. That was the worst night of my life.

The next morning when I woke up, I was standing at the altar steps again, and everything was clean. I was in a pretty, but extremely old-fashioned dress, one of those long flowing white ones I've heard so much about. My scars were painfully visible, and still scabby. He was behind the curtain, I knew. Not a peep came out of him, but I got the instructions just the same. It wouldn't be to hard to find some homeless people here in Chicago that would be willing to take care of this God forsaken building in return for food, clothing, and a place to sleep every night. I think they were still getting the worse end of the bargain, and they would too if the knew the slave-driver waiting for them. But finding them, no problem. After I found some I was let home, ya know, to find more followers and stuff for that psycho monster. While I was stuck in traffic though, I got motion sickness. Strange, considering every car for five miles in either direction was at a dead stand still. Good thing I had my top down, 'cause I was in no mood to clean puke off the seat of my new old Fiat. Could I...? Noo...that would be impossible...

Yeah, and everyone always told you monsters were fake.