“Aria!” Cin yelled, watching Aria fall from the terrace.
Before she could move to break Aria’s fall, a flash of black pulled Aria from the air.
Standing besides Cin, a woman, clad all in black held Aria. Fish net stockings grazed her legs between the platform heeled leather boots and the leather miniskirt. The bottom half of her black hair had been dyed with such deep a red that her hair looked like it dripped blood. Her black lips parted with a coy smile, making her already beautifully cold skin all the more pale. Dark eyeliner enhanced the mischief in her gaze as Aria began to waken still drugged and in a haze.
“Kylie!” Caius called down from the terrace. “Bring her back to me.”
Kylie gave an amused scoff. “Make me,” she said earning a pursed snarl from Caius.
“Here,” Kylie said, passing Aria to Cin.
“Kylie!” Caius shouted.
Kylie flipped a finely manicured finger at Caius. Her black polished caught the moonlight.
“Back down, Kylie,” Caius warned.
“Blow it out your hole,” Kylie said.
As Cin helped Aria find the ground beneath her, there was a flash from the balcony, and, gasping, Cin braced for an impact that never came. Behind her Kylie stood, the only barrier between Cin and Caius. Kylie’s outstretched arm pushed against Caius.
“Watch your sides, little sister,” Caius said.
“You better get going,” Kylie said to Cin. “If he gets mad enough, I won’t be able to stop him.”
As Cin began to move away with Aria, Caius attempted to shift around Kylie, but Kylie moved too fast. Her hands slammed into Caius’ chest, blasting him back several feet. Caius regained his balance and moved to shift again, but in the time it took Caius to recover, Cin and Aria were gone.
“Wench!” Caius said, raising his hand to strike Kylie who caught his fist.
Kylie smiled as her brother ground his teeth.
“I never should have pulled you back,” he said.
“No,” Kylie said. “You shouldn’t have.”
Caius pulled back his hand.
“I could have you killed here,” he threatened.
“No,” Kylie said. “You can’t. Or you would have ages ago.”
Without another word, Kylie sauntered on toward the gardens away from the castle and Caius.
“Get in my way again, Kylie, and you won’t survive the day.”
Kylie began to whistle a tune of her own making.
“There are other ways to kill an immortal who refuses to die!”
“We’ll see,” Kylie said, not bothering to look back.
“Trollop!” Caius shouted and Kylie gave a nonchalant wave from the gardens, her manicured nails with black sheen catching the moonlight.
* * *
Cin dropped Aria into the small row boat, rocking against the water. Taking up an oar she pushed against the land, setting the boat in motion away from the island.
Aria stirred, wincing as she shifted herself uncomfortably in the boat.
“Take it easy,” Cin said.
“I’m…” Aria tried to answer.
“We’re alright now,” Cin said.
“Where are we…”
“On the Minnow,” Cin said.
“…Going,” Aria clarified, leaving a contended smile on Cin face as pulled a flask from her boot and threw down a drink.
“Some where safe,” said Cin.
The boat made its way upstream, cutting through the night fog. Aria hugged her knees to her chest, her attention only fixed on the walking corpse slogging its way along the bank of the river.
“What are they?” Aria said.
“They’re zombies,” Cin said, half smirking.
Aria frowned at Cin.
“No, I mean… really. What happened?” she asked.
“What does it look like?”
Aria stared through the fog at a collection of corpses hunched over, taking turns pulling the flesh off a woman who screamed. Aria winced as Cin chugged back another flask.
“How did you find me?” Aria asked.
“Do you know anything of use?”
Cin didn’t miss the bite in Aria’s tone.
“I know plenty,” Cin said. “I just don’t think I’m the one to explain, nor is a boat in the middle of the St. Lawrence river the place to break the news to you.”
Aria stared back to the shore line and watched the run of corpses trudge along upstream. Screams followed them through the night as the moon filled the sky. Shadow thickened. Now and then, Cin gave a push off with the oar allowing the current the work load.
The soft lapping against the boat lulled Aria into a dulled rest, Cin’s composure brightened.
“There,” she said pointing ahead. Aria followed Cin’s enthusiasm and gasped at the large vessel dead ahead.
“A boat?” Aria said.
Cin chuckled. “Don’t let the Captain hear you call it a boat.”
“Captain?” Arias said and Cin smiled.
“Aye,” she said. “The Cap’n.”
They drew near the ship. The port holes blazed with orange. On board, Aria could make out the occasional lantern that appeared to be swinging on deck. The neared the ship, the more the fog cleared until Aria could make out a black silhouette. The pigtails that framed a head, were dwarfed by the rocket launcher perched casually on a shoulder. The blood drained from Aria’s face as the snap of bubblegum broke the silence.
“What be on board the deck tonight?” a voice from the deck carried down.
“Just a Slush Brain filled with pirates, the booze, and leather.”
The girl lowered the rocket launcher as the boat drew closer. The swaying lantern cast an occasional light on a woman sporting a long set of blond and pink pigtails.
Cin grinned up at the woman-child, who blew a pink bubble. Smiling down at Cin, she said one word.
Last edited and updated 15 August 2016
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