Read Dancing Nitely Online

Authors: Nancy A. Collins

Tags: #'vampires, #horror, #horror fiction short story, #vampire sex, #undead fiction, #vampire horror, #paranormal horror, #paranormal vampires'

Dancing Nitely

 

DANCING NITELY

 

 

 

 

 

 

Nancy A. Collins

 

Copyright Nancy A. Collins 2012

Published by Hopedale Press at Smashwords

 

 

 

 

Originally published
in
Under The Fang
(1991)

 

 

Find out more about Nancy A. Collins
at:

www.golgothamonline.com

truesonjablue.blogspot.com

 

Published in the United States of
America

 

All rights reserved. No part of this
publication may be reproduced in any form or by any means
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author.

 

***

 

 

It was midnight by the time
Mavrides got out of his coffin.
Usually he
woke around dusk, just as the sun started its descent behind the
towering steel and black glass boxes that dominated the skyline;
but last night had been a long one. His joints popped like rifle
shots as he climbed from the confines of the narrow, satin-lined
mahogany box.

His temples throbbed
sluggishly as his pulse restarted. He hadn’t been
this
hung-over in...He
shrugged and let the analogy drop. He’d been Undead since the late
Sixties—long before the Uprising—and the Human ability to measure
time in such trivial increments as weeks and months had long since
atrophied.

He staggered into the
bathroom and rinsed out his mouth, watching the previous evening’s
clotted blood swirl down the drain. He took his shaving kit out of
the medicine cabinet, no longer noticing the carefully opaqued
mirror-face. He’d gotten used to shaving blind over the years,
although the first time he’d tried it, he opened his throat from
ear to ear—not that it mattered. Still, it was embarrassing to be
seen in public with one’s nose sliced off. Mavrides was nothing if
not image conscious. After all those years posing as Human, the
habit was difficult to break.

He padded along the unlit
hall to the kitchen. He did not need artificial light to guide him.
His apartment building was now Vampires Only, the previous Human
tenants having been forcibly relocated to the pens on the outskirts
of town or simply converted. The new landlords had thoughtfully
installed floor-to-ceiling black-out curtains for the few windows
that weren’t bricked over. They also brought in an electrician to
remove all the overhead light fixtures. These perks had been
instrumental in Mavrides’ decision to buy into the
condo.

He pushed open the kitchen
door, prepared for the rank odor of cat piss that greeted him. “How
are my kitties tonight, hmmmm?” he asked in a falsetto voice,
scanning the row of wire cages arranged along the counter
top.

The cats hissed impotently,
flattening their ears against their skulls, as he dumped a bag of
kibble into the hoppers atop the cages. His prime breeder, a
tortoise-shell dame with huge greenish-yellow eyes, watched him
warily as she suckled her most recent litter. Mavrides watched the
animals for a moment as they fed, then selected a large tabby for
breakfast.

The cat yowled in fear and
pain as he grasped it by its nape, digging its claws into his
exposed forearms. A pinkish fluid dribbled from the gashes. He
snapped the wretched beast’s neck, cutting short its infernal
yowling, and drank from the still-pulsing throat. After he finished
draining the cat, he opened the disposal chute that lead to the
incinerator and tossed the carcass inside.

The incinerator was another
benefit to signing with the condominium; he still remembered the
Bad Old Days, when he’d had no other way of ridding himself of
empties than a meat cleaver and the garbage disposal.

Refreshed by his
pick-me-up, he chose his evening attire. He was supposed to meet
Smith and Wellman down at the club, and he was already late. He
quickly pulled on his black silk shirt, black designer jeans, black
motorcycle boots, black suede gloves, black raincoat, and black
velvet beret. He didn’t need a mirror to tell him he looked
cool.

***

Club Vlad was the hottest
bar in town. There were plenty of Vampire-Only places since the
Uprising, but Club Vlad claimed the distinction of being the first
and the best. It was located in the warehouse district, near the
docks. Before the world’s vampires came out of their coffins and
into the streets, it had catered to Humans with “special tastes”.
When the owner voluntarily converted, it was only natural that the
club do so as well.

The building was a huge
wooden structure, the roof adorned with a neon sculpture of Bela
Lugosi glowering from behind his upraised cape. Beneath the dead
actor’s likeness was a blood-red sign that proclaimed in glowing
cursive:
Dancing Nitely
. All of the windows were boarded up and the front entrance
was guarded by a muscular vampire with biker tattoos swarming his
bare chest and forearms. The bouncer grunted and opened the
soundproofed door as Mavrides approached. Stale air and the
repetitive throb of electronic music washed onto the deserted
street. Someone inside screamed.

Mavrides hurried inside. He
was missing the floor show!

Once he crossed the
threshold, he saw he needn’t have worried. A
nouveau
undead had a waitress pinned
to a table and was busy trying to tear out her throat. The human
woman, naked except for the leather collar that protected her neck
and secured her to the length of chain that lead to the bar, kicked
and clawed at her assailant.

As Mavrides watched, the
tattooed bouncer grabbed the drunken vampire and propelled him
toward the door. “That’s it, dead boy! I thought I told you to
leave!”

The drunk, his face smeared
with saliva and blood, tried to break away. The bouncer casually
yanked the rowdy’s left arm off.


Ow, man! That
hurts!
” The
nouveau
whined.


Too fuckin’ bad! Now get
out and stay out!” The bouncer snarled as he hurled the drunk out
the door. “And take this with you!” he added, throwing the
still-twitching severed limb into the street. Meanwhile one of the
club’s vampiric employees leaned over the savaged waitress, openly
licking his fingers as he checked her wounds.

Mavrides shook his head in
disgust and wondered what the world was coming too. It wasn’t like
the Bad Old Days, when you had to be discrete in order to simply
survive. Today’s new breed of vampire didn’t have to worry about
waking up with a stake piercing their thorax, and the
nouveau
Undead were
barely a step or two from being human. Few of them could handle
their blood without getting sloppy. Most of them had a hard time
metabolizing the straight stuff, let alone tainted
juice.

He shouldered his way to
the bar, eyeing the pale-skinned, hollow-cheeked Humans tethered to
the brass foot rail by spools of stainless steel chain. While
alcohol and other narcotics had no direct effect on vampires, the
tainted blood of addicts was a powerful intoxicant. While most
undead clubs offered only a handful of junkies and winos, Club Vlad
was famous for the quality of its cellar.

A wispy, fair-haired youth,
bled to a pleasing marble white, smiled blearily at him and
languidly lifted his chin in ritual surrender. Mavrides shook his
head in polite refusal and continued until he came to a short,
darkish girl with sunken eyes. He ran his hand along the curve of
her shoulder. The waitress jerked at his touch like a startled
animal. Despite her wasted appearance, her eyes were hot and wet,
the drug forced into her veins making her pupils shimmer in the dim
light like candle flames. Mavrides motioned to the bartender, who
provided him with a large hypodermic syringe and a wine glass. He
stuck the syringe into the shunt implanted in the waitress’s elbow,
withdrawing a half pint of tainted juice. He squirted the coppery
liquid into a wine glass and quickly downed it before it had a
chance to cool and coagulate.


Mavrides! Over
here!”

He looked up, his head
already swimming from the drugs leeched from the waitress. It was
Wellman, waving at him from one of the booths near the dance floor.
He could see he had his ubiquitous portable mini-cam clutched in
one hand. Mavrides returned his old friend’s greeting and tossed a
couple of crumpled bills onto the bar.


Shit, man! We thought you
weren’t going to make it!” Wellman said by way of
greeting.

Mavrides shrugged. “I
overslept. Is Smith here?”

Wellman grinned, exposing
his fangs. “Yeah, he’s checking out the talent.”

Mavrides grunted as he slid
into the booth. He’d known both of them for decades. In fact,
Wellman had been one of his first converts. As for Smith, he had
been responsible for Mavrides’ own conversion behind some
god-forsaken rock venue back in ‘69. At first Mavrides had thought
the quiet, bespectacled young man was just another drug dealer. But
Smith had proved to have far more than grass and window pane to
offer.

Smith shouldered his way
across the crowded dance floor, the flickering neon reflected in
his glasses. At first glance, he appeared to be a mere human,
dressed in ragged blue jeans and a rumpled t-shirt. This camouflage
had served him well for over four decades. It was impossible to
tell simply by looking at him that he was one of the most important
and influential leaders behind the Uprising. Mavrides was uncertain
of Smith’s exact age—or even if “Smith” was his real name. He’d
occasionally overheard his mentor talking about Rasputin and
Catherine the Great in extremely personal detail, and every so
often the southwestern twang he affected lapsed into a vaguely
Slavic accent.


How’s it look tonight?”
Wellman asked as he sipped a snifter of A+ meth addict.


Promising. The first
fight’s between Delphe’s George and Keckhaver’s Mueller. Looks like
a good show. I’d put my money on the German.” Smith’s eyes glowed
wine-red behind the lens of his spectacles. Despite their
thickness, the glasses were purely decorative. Like most vampires,
Smith’s vision was excellent, but he’d grown accustomed to wearing
them as part of his protective coloration. As he spoke, he gestured
to one of the waitresses tethered to the bar. The human obediently
shambled forward, the spool whirring as the chain played
out.

Mavrides scanned the dance
floor while Smith pulled himself a drink. He recognized only a few
of the vampires gyrating to the electronica pouring from the
speakers. Most of the patrons seemed to be
nouveau
, converted since the
Uprising. They were easy to spot, since most were tricked out in
drag, dressed like Bela Lugosi or Vampira. Back in the Bad Old
Days, dressing that blatantly was tantamount to hanging a sign
around your neck saying: ‘Drive A Stake Through My
Heart!’

Some of the wealthier
attendees were accompanied by their own private stock: humans clad
entirely in black rubber and leather except for their exposed
jugulars. The faceless humans’ eyes glinted wetly from inside their
zippered masks, reminding Mavrides of the cats in his
kitchen.

A gong sounded and the
dancers halted their movements, turning as one to face the stage.
Club Vlad’s official Master of Ceremonies, a stocky vampire dressed
in a black cassock and floppy beret, raised his hands for silence.
He held a cordless microphone and his voice boomed out over the
club’s speakers.


Welcome and good
eveeee-ning
, fellow
children of the night, to Club Vlad; the city’s premiere undead
nightspot! We’ve got a fine floor show lined up for you, if I do
say so myself! Something for everybody! We’ve got heavy-weights,
welter-weights, bantams, and even a ladies and children’s
competition to look forward to before cock crow! I don’t want to
hold up the festivities by talking any longer than I need to, so
let’s bring out our first pair of contestants!”

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