Water fell in long, clean sheets before the cave. Derwin held his breath. If he could pass through, part the singular stream of water rushing past, he could escape, but such a feat required certain supplies, and he had none.
Removing the tin can from his pouch, he tapped his thumb against the lid. He'd repeated the gesture all through the day. Empty. He knew it was, and yet he continued to tap it, continued to twist the lid, peak inside, assure himself once again that yes, the can was indeed empty. Slapping the lid back on, he twisted it tight and returned it to his pouch.
He'd been a fool. And worse, a lazy one at that. Hoping to save what remained of his savings, he'd hired a nurse with, he could admit it now, a less than stellar reputation. Missy was an EMT. Derwin assumed the fleshbags had a system in place that ensured competent, sane individuals held positions of responsibility. Those that cared for the sick and dying surely had a grasp of rudimentary medical procedures--or at least, reality. Missy, for her part, had let both slip through her fingers.
Small wonder she was so easily bought.
When Gerswhin's letter arrived, Derwin had his doubts. Not only in his long time rivals willingness to follow through on his threats, but his own preparedness in case of attack.
It was what first made him question his decision to employ Missy. He had funds, yes--one did not live for over five centuries without accruing a healthy nest egg--but his coffers did not spill over like they once did. Even vampires fell on hard times, and Derwin had fallen. Nothing precipitous. Times had been lean before. But enough had gone wrong to make his fingers curl into the cushions of his seat, clenching the fine fabric there, whenever the possibility of more fiscal losses seemed imminent.
Still, Missy had been a mistake. Corners could be cut, but he was old enough to know that some corners were best left unmolested. Some things could not papered over. But he had, and when she invited Gerswhin and his allies into Derwin's home, it had been all too easy for them to take him by surprise.
He had awoken in the cave. How they managed to get him in there with the waterfall continued to perplex him. Spells could alter the course of water. Stop it entirely in some cases. Yet Derwin could not sense the necessary levels of fel energies required to perform such a feat. It had to have been something else.
Water pounded into the lake below. The natural acoustics of the cave made sure the sound reverberated back on itself. Derwin felt like he was inside a drum. The thrash of water an ever present beat drowning out any hope of uninterrupted thought.
His fingers went back to his pouch, back to the can. No! He was wasting time now. Repeating himself in the hope that someone else would figure out this puzzle for him. Three hundred years he and Gerwshin had played their games. Three hundred years of death traps and kidnappings. Of riddles wrapped in letters, left discretely on dining room tables, slipped into door cracks, placed on the bodies of dead lovers.
Gerswhin. The name made his lips curl. His fangs were out. He could feel their curves pressed against his lip. Gerswhin. The man was intent on denying him his rest, forcing him into a life of savagery, when all Derwin really wanted was a quaint life of luxury, punctuated here and there by a few debaucheries. A blood bath on his birthday. An orgy on a month. A blood orgy on the anniversary of his turning. Simple things, really. Why a fellow traveler felt the need to deny him these basic pleasures remained a mystery.
Perhaps it had something to do with that whole ordeal with his wife. When was that again? Derwin seemed to recall a rather scandalous French woman around the time of the Jacobians. Powder white skin, thin wrist, an enigmatic smile that carried something in it. A promise, perhaps. Or something even more devious.
Had he fucked her? Was that it? Or Gerswhin, he thought, forgetting the cacophony of the waterfall for the first time since arriving in the cave. Are we so petty as to make a blood feud out of a picadillo?
The possibility saddened him. If he was going to have a rivalry that defied the ages, surely it could be over something more substantial than
The following challenges were completed during the writing exercise:
Begin Start typing to begin
Location A waterfall
Event Your character is all alone
Words Reach 50 words
Words Reach 100 words
Prop Include an empty tin can
Character An incompetent nurse
Words Reach 200 words
Event A mysterious letter arrives
Letter Use the letter K
Letter Use the letter D
Words Reach 300 words
Words Reach 400 words
Words Reach 500 words
Words Reach 600 words
Words Reach 700 words
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