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Monday, 23 February 2009

The Rising - Chapter 102: Gatecrasher

I didn’t know how Dave had got himself into this situation but one thing was clear as I saw what was happening to him through the window.

They’re going to kill him.

The concierge spun round with a startled look on his face. I smashed through the window and flew across the room towards him, grabbing his neck and pinning him against the wall.

‘Where are you taking him?’ I growled.

‘Who are you?’ the concierge whimpered.

‘Dave’s my friend. Where is he?’

The concierge instinctively glanced towards the door. A vision of a hotel kitchen flashed into my mind.

‘Thanks. That’s all I need.’

I drew the silver-plated dagger from my belt and jabbed it into the concierge’s neck. He tried to scream but the unstoppable reaction now taking over his body had already eaten away his voice box. The ash was still falling from his wound as I left the bedroom with murder on my mind.

I looked up and down the corridor and saw two vampires struggling to drag Dave’s limp body into the elevator. I started to run. The sound of my feet stomping along the corridor alerted them and one of them hit the button to close the doors. I took longer and longer steps until I was almost flying again, but I just failed to reach the elevator before the doors closed in front of me.

With no door leading to a staircase to the left or right, I decided to test my abilities again. I told myself I needed more strength in my arms. In less than a second, warm blood had flowed into my biceps and triceps. I squeezed the tips of my fingers into the gaps between the elevator doors and tried to pull them apart. It was no problem. I was prepared for a struggle but I flung the heavy metal doors apart with ease.

I leaned forward and gazed into the black chasm below. The elevator had just stopped at the ground floor and I heard the doors open. Without a second to spare, I jumped forward and fell down onto the elevator. With power still in my arms, I punched a hole through the roof like it was made from tin foil and tore a strip away, just big enough for me to fit through. I jumped down.

Dave was at my feet. He lay between me and his captors, who were trying to drag him away by his collar. With hatred in their eyes, they stared me down like they were going to jump on me and tear me apart. Then in unison, their gazes clocked the silver dagger in my hand.

They know I’ve killed their friend. They know I want to do the same to them.

The two vampires let go of Dave and his head thumped to the ground, but the impact failed to wake him up. They both took a step back and held their hands in front of them. I leaned over and picked Dave up by his collar. Even though my left arm was full of blood, pumping my muscles larger than they had ever been before, I knew I wouldn’t be able to carry Dave for long.

I’ve got to get the hell out of here.

I held the dagger out and edged out of the elevator, forcing the vampires in front of me to take further steps back into the reception area. Just over their shoulders, I saw something that made my heart sink, something that would make getting out of the hotel very difficult. A mob of at least twenty people walked through the front door to the hotel.

Correction: a mob of at least twenty vampires.

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