It was almost time! It was almost time! It was almost time! Konrad could barely contain his glee as he skipped through the graveyard on his way home, leap-frogging a the statue of an angel bent over a tomb, weeping. It was almost time for his game. His second favourite game in the whole world. Oh how he got to play it so seldom with the vigilant eyes watching, prying, keeping him within the rules of Mother and her...cursed masquerade. Her rules to keep everything hidden butoh not now! Every hundred years of so Konrad got to play his game and how he loved every minute of its preparation.
Every century or so, when Mother was busy with the other children Konrad would play his game. He would collect twelve damned people wronged people. Mortals who held within them either such mania, or such burning hate for a wrong doing that they would be willing to do anything to have their revenge, and he would play them against each other until only one was left. Every time the winner was so interesting, so fascinating. Like Kali...Poor sweet Kali. Konrad sniggered to himself, clapping his hands and hopping from foot to foot as he passed a young couple, arm in arm who had chosen, perhaps unwisely, to take a short cut through the tomb. " Ohahahaha" Konrad cackled as he circled around them, following them for a moment before his attention drifted off and he skittered through the neat rows of tombs.
If the vampire could keep still for but a single moment, the on-looker might note a handsome young man possessed of high cheek bones and a lantern jaw, an elegant nose and broad sweeps for eyebrows. His hair, bleached blonde had been pulled back with gel in mimicry of a favourite rock-star from forty years past. Beneath this was worn a simple black t-shirt and jeans with a chain drifting between pocket and belt loop. The heavy leather jacket he wore offered little protection from the fresh evening, but he hardly required it, being several hundred years dead and quite immune to the common cold.
Almost home, Konrad paused by one of the last great tombs, sorting his jacket before lifting his hand and giving the door three loud raps. As if waiting for the command the door rolled open and an arm rotten with decay and carrying the green lichen and moss of an earthy grave sprang forward, skeletal fingers clutching a bouquet of rotten and blackened roses. Snatching the flowers, Konrad gave the faint tip of an unseen hat and sprang through the gates of the cemetery which adjoined his home, cackling.
The rotten arm withdrew into the tomb, closing shut the door behind it. The tomb's occupant, one James H. West was in life Konrad's favourite florist and his natural talent had...unfortunately been his undoing, for Konrad is not a man to be robbed of his toys by death, and even a fatal stroke would not deny the vampire the services of his green-fingered friend. Weary with the weight of two hundred years, and burning with the agony that comes from being dead, yet living still. Mister West, formerly of 32 West Dickens street, laid himself to sleep in his tomb, pulling the heavy stone lid back over his resting place.
Home at last Konrad threw open the doors, swatting at the dogs that rushed to meet him. Both huge bull mastiff's of immense size and incredible bulk, Konrad swatted aside their affections. " Ooooooh Kali!" He called ot into the home. " Where for art thou Kali? Art thou in the pantry, hiding beneath the shelves? Art thou in the attic!? Concealed with the Christmas decorations? Where for art thou, Kali!?" Konrad cried out, pulling off his jacket and tossing it towards the coat-hanger. When it missed and fell to the floor some great crawling, creeping thing, all pallid flesh and long, questing fingers caught hold of the jackets collar and dragged it along the floor.