He knew that she could clearly see him, despite the deep shadows that encased the interior of the warehouse, and it was only due to some sense of honor that she stepped into one of the thin shafts of moonlight that shown through the many skylights, allowing his mortal eyes to see her.
The last time he had seen her-it had been many years ago-she had had short red hair and soft brown eyes that bespoke of the kindness in her soul. It was nothing like she appeared now. Her hair had grown long, at her own urging, and was tightly braided into a twisting tail that hung nearly down to below the back of her knees. Her eyes, formally brown and full of love, were now black, with a tinge of red to them, changed with the rebirth of her form.
"Callie," he acknowledged her, nodding his head ever so slightly.
"Vincent," she responded, her cold eyes never straying from his form.
"I must say, I didn't think that you'd come after me yourself."
"You destroyed my entire network in Frankfurt, Vincent. Ten years of hard work on my part. Of recruiting. Of organizing. Of bribing the right officials. I couldn't very well set back and let one of my Lieutenants come after you, now could I?"
"Seeing has how I killed your top people, I don't think you had much of a choice. I doubt that there's anyone left of your Kindred that could challenge me. I just thought that you'd send the lot of them after me instead of coming yourself. You've never come after me in the past, though that is what I've always wanted."
"Vincent, ever the confident one. What makes you think that I didn't bring the lot of them with me?"
The lights of the warehouse began flickering to life, a harsh whiteness that peeled back the darkness and revealed a myriad of forms through out the building. Vincent felt a rush of fear as his eyes darted about, his mind counting off the numerous members of Callie's Kindred, and he pushed it aside. He had known for the last twenty years that this time would come, and he actually felt a sense of peace fall over him, giving him the courage that he needed.
"You're not frightened?" asked Callie, her voice sounding mildly surprised, yet seductively teasing at the same time.
"I've never been frightened of you, Callie."
"Ever the pure of heart," she mocked, placing a hand to her breast and casting her gaze upwards. "Ever the chivalrous knight, on his quest to free his beloved from a life of damnation."
"I swore my love to you, Callie."
"Until death do us part," she trilled. "I've tried to tell you this before, Vincent. I'm dead. We've parted."
"Your soul is the only thing that's died, and it can't know any peace as long as your body is inhabited by the demon that you now are."
Callie shook her head in dismay, holding her arms out and turning around to gaze upon the many members of her Kindred, laughing mockingly. Her minions began laughing with her, a number of them slipping amongst the multitude of crates, inching closer to the man that had plagued their Mistress for nearly two decades.
"Look at you, Vincent. Do you really think that you can destroy me? True, you have become the gifted warrior over the years, but time is an enemy exclusive to mortals. You may have been able to best my soldiers, but you'll find me an entirely different challenge."
Vincent slowly reached over his shoulder, wrapping his hand around the hilt of the sword that he carried strapped to his back, and it was only a motion from Callie that kept her Kindred from swarming over him. Smiling contently, Vincent withdrew his sword and laid it on the ground before him, rising to look at Callie with misty eyes.
"I'm not going to fight you, Callie. That's not the finality that I've sought for all these years."
"What? Are you saying that you want me to turn you? Is that it? To enable you to be by my side once more? I'm beyond that need, Vincent. You can, however, become one of my Lieutenants."
"You've avoided confronting me for twenty years, Callie. Every time I tried to draw you out, you remained hiding."
"I've never hidden from you," she snarled. "It's just that you've finally managed to make yourself a big enough pain in the ass that I've decided to deal with you myself."
"Don't lie to me, or yourself, Callie. You knew that my love for you would overcome the creature that you've become."
"I think it's time for you to die, Vincent."
"Wrong, Callie," he countered, reaching into the pocket of his jacket and removing a small, black device. "It's time for your body to die, so that our souls can be together once more."
Callie's eyes narrowed as she studied the device, and then widened as she recognized the remote detonator for what it was.
"Fifty pounds of C-4," he said, calmly. "And about a hundred of the crates stored here are filled with various quantities of Holy Water, Silver Nitrate, and Garlic Powder."
The face that had haunted his dreams for the last twenty years twisted into its true form, a hard mask of anger and contempt, and her mouth became filled with glistening fangs.
"Most of it's concentrated around us," he added, his thumbing moving to the button that would transmit the signal to the explosives. "Probably won't take out all of you Kindred, but you…. You'll finally be free."
Callie launched herself at Vincent, her incredible speed actually allowing her to reach him in the instant before he pushed the button. Even so, it was not fast enough to stop him.
"I love you," he said, the roar of the explosion ripping both of them from existence.