Undead Paladin Chapter 6: The Turning

The woods, the strange feel of the sun, and her immense exhaustion all lead to Amanda laying on the ground within the brush, trying as it might to get up and stay quiet – for whatever it was that was wondering the woods was still stalking her. Pieces of the world faded as she laid in wait, and hoped that whatever it was passed her up.

In that moment, under the tingle of the sunlight, something made a grab for her. She had no fight in as her vague memory recorded her being lifted and carried onto a small clearing by the sound of roaring engines.

The road.
At around this point someone shoved a bottle at her. “Here, drink,” a male voice speedily spoke shortly afterwards. Amanda made no arguing stance at all as she took a drink of what she hoped was water and looked up at a frail-looking man in a black hoodie and matching sweatpants. “Now, you alright?” he asked after she took a few gulps.

“I dunno, I think so...” Amanda replied, “who're you?”

“Watts,” he simply replied. Amanda sent him a queer glance at the response then took another gulp out of the bottle. It tasted like mineral water, though with the strange changes in her taste-buds that had been going on she couldn't be that sure. She looked back up at Watts. “So, what are you...” she began to ask.

“Waiting for ride,” he simply replied, “we're heading for Barrie.”

“Why?” she asked him again, the hair on her neck standing on end.

“Safe place,” he replied, “From there we head for Newmarket, then Toronto. Safer place.”

“How did you...?” Amanda started speaking again. “Tip off from peps,” was he's quick reply.

“Peps, what...” Amanda tried to get more words in with more cut off: “buds in woods scoped the fence. They sees the escape. We came to get yous out of the forest.”

“Ok then...” Amanda looked at him skeptically.

“But why...?” and again Watts jumped in “We be looking out for our own: the fence takes us and does stuff to us. The fence makes us too.

“By the way,” Watts went on, “what they do to you? Your skin looks funny.”

Amanda was starting to come more into her senses and she realized at the question posed by Watts that she was getting used to the strange tingling sensation that her skin was giving in lieu of the fuzzy warm feeling, or even the burning that she was expecting. “I don't know,” she replied, “They injected me with things and... I don't know anymore.”

“Well, you can't be a vampire now,” he replied, “Vampire skin doesn't do that – I know for fact.”

“Really now,” Amanda replied quietly. She looked at the pavement for some time before looking back up at Watts. “So, who are your... 'peps'?” Amanda asked.

“Oh, they're my friends,” Watts replied simply, “They're secret society of sorts. Times are tough and we must stand up for eachother, must protect eachother. All: the turned and the affected. Though what you are I'm not sure myself. Never seen it before.”

“What am I?” Amanda asked rhetorically. It was clear that Watts knew nothing, so it reaffirmed in her that she was a unique of sorts: an anomaly in the theoretical dice roll, and that she, only she, developed these powers, that she could use in her part of God's plan to deliver humanity from evil and stop it from waltzing into temptation.

“What I am I'm not certain of,” she replied to Watts while he fiddled with an iPhone* that he pulled out of this pocket, “I just know that I'm now a vampire, or so the scientists told me at that... Godless place.” She looked to the road and sighed. “God clearly must have something for me, if only I know what.”

She looked to the road as she spoke further: “I can't be certain of what role I play in his plan and in this system of things, but I doubt he would grant me these powers if...”

“Oh, not a Jesus freak,” Watts uttered under his breath rudely.

“What, with the vampire outbreak, the fall of the government as we know it and injustice everywhere, your going to stand there and mock the one true God that can save us from the manifesting of the devil among us?” Amanda rallied back in high fervour.

“...Yes,” Watts replied in a cold tone, “God's done nothing for me... assuming he-she-it is even real in the first place.”

“He's very real,” Amanda replied, “Look at me!” She pointed to her skin, glistening in the high sunlight.

“I have no idea what the fuck that is, and neither do you,” Watts replied, “For all you know the scientist dudes put sparkles in your blood or something.”

Watts took a deep breath before then speaking matter-of-factly “Our ride will be here shortly. From there, safety.”

***

Silence loomed over the dark-coloured van as it approached to pick the two up. Nothing but the soft roar of the engine could be heard as it came over on the paved county road they were waiting on. The dark-clothed driver, in wear that was heavily concealing, gestured to Watts before he opened the side door to allow Amanda in the vehicle with him. She hesitated at first, staring at the innocent centre seat of the van, shadowed in a dark van with tinted windows, but this was quickly broken with Watts saying “get use to it: most of us can't be in the sun for any real length of time.”

Once in the van Amanda watched it slide shut behind Watts whom took a seat next to her. In that moment the van then revved and sped down the county road away from the woods that Amanda spent three nights in. She was feeling a little spent, but she was feeling better than she was before.

“Find anyone else Watts?” the vehicle driver asked. “No man,” Watts replied, “As anyone else?”

The driver was quiet for a bit. “Twist didn't make it,” the driver simply said in a voice full of regret.

“You sure, I know I didn't see him but...” Watts was cut off when the driver said “Batsie found his corpse being burned by them fuckers in the woods.”

“Ok,” Watts became quiet as he hanged his head. Who Twist was Amanda couldn't be sure of, she just knew that he was dead and it seemed to make Watts sad for whatever reason. There was a thought of how the living and the dead would be judged when the rapture came and Jesus would return to the world as described in Revelations. The worry came in when one wondered if they would be judged good or evil, and of course, if you follow scripture to the letter then there wasn't a problem: you were good and God will receive you. Course, vampires were undead, walking abominations, so where would that place the newly dead Twist? Even if he wasn't a vampire, which was entirely possible, she's never met the guy before and now never will, but he seemed complicit with people that were – this 'society' that Watts briefly mentioned. After all, blessed is one who does not walk with the wicked**, condemned or the damned, and it is pretty clear that vampirism is punishment from God.

“Our father who art in heaven,” Amanda started up as the thought crossed her mind, the thought that whomever Twist was had to be someone whom would never feel the embrace of God. She somehow needed reassurance. “Hollow be thy name, thy kingdom come...”

“Thy will be done on Earth as it is in freaking heaven,” Watts jumped in smugly, “Give us today our bread and forgive us our sins as we forgive those who sin against you, lead us not into temp-fucking-tation, but de-LIVER us from the bad shit, a-fucking-man.

“Now shut up you Jesus freak.”
*Apple Inc does not sponsor this site either.
**Psalm 1:1 “Blessed is the man who does not walk in the counsel of the wicked or stand in the way of sinners or sit in the seat of the mockers.” (New International Version)