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Night of the Vampire
One weekend Robert and I decided to drive to Cades Cove in Tennessee to go camping. We need a change from the boring and dull monotonous school work that had engulfed us, and this had such seemed to be the quickest way out.
When we got there it was nice and sunny, especially for a fall day, so we decided to have a picnic instead of driving back into Gatlinburg to eat. We found a spot near the stream surrounded by some really soft grass and shaded by a nearby magnolia tree. This was all gloriously accented by the bubbling, bustling, and almost musical sounding stream. Robert decided to draw the scene while I laid on the ground beside him, quickly falling asleep, still exhausted from our long drive…
I was shaken awake by Robert a few hours later.
“Wake up. It’s starting to get stormy,” he said, packing up his art supplies in his backpack as I sat up.
I looked around, noticing that the area looked almost the exact opposite of how it had looked before I had fallen asleep. It was getting dark, with ominous and depressing storm clouds pressing closer and closer in the horizon. There was no way we could walk the mile back to the campsite before the bottom dropped out.
“Lets go up there,” I said, looking up at an old abandon sawmill a little ways up the stream. It was hard to believe I hadn’t spotted the ancient looking building before when I was surveying the beautiful scenery. As a matter of fact, I had never seen it in any of my families many trips to Cades Cove.
It ended up being farther away than we first thought. By the time we began to even get close to it, I was soaked to the bone in cold rainwater. Robert wasn’t fairing all that well either, especially considering he had handed me his coat when it first started raining for a little extra warmth.
As we get closer and closer, the features if the old deserted mill became clearer and clearer. The old, dilapidated water wheel creaked beneath the strain of the fast moving river water. Rusted old metal saw blades were scattered all over the ground with no concern for if someone would just happen to stumble upon them and be sliced to pieces. The door squealed and squelched like nails on a chalkboard as it swayed on its hinges in the wind.
“This place gives me the creeps,” I said, shivering from the cold as well as the eeriness of the scene. This certainly wasn’t like any of the other historic buildings in Cades Cove. They had all been cleaned up and made safe for visitors to go inside and tour them. There was no way the park rangers would leave rusty saw blades just lying around.
“It’ll be ok. Lets get inside where it’s not so wet before you end up sick,” Robert said, ushering me quickly inside the rickety, ransacked building.
As I entered the inside of the mill, it certainly didn’t make me feel any better than the outside had. The lumber equipment to chop up the large logs could be spotted through one large doorway. I could see the saw blades and other equipment lying dormant, almost as if they were tigers with startling fangs lying in wait for their prey to stumble upon them.
I surveyed the room around us to spot ancient looking deer heads hanging around the room. There were also dilapidated red coaches scattered around the room with most of the stuffing lying on the ground around them. Someone or something had destroyed them.
There were spider webs everywhere on the musty moldy walls, including between the antlers on the deer heads. This entrance room had apparently been a resting place for the loggers.
I sneezed at the amount of dust we had stirred up just by walking in.
“I’m not sick!” I quickly said, before Robert could even get the words out of his mouth.
“Fine,” he mumbled. Just then, he twitched ever so slightly, and began to stare into the room that held the lumber equipment.
“What’s the matter? Did you hear something?” I asked. He shook his head no, but I didn’t believe him. He was probably just trying to protect me, and prevent me from being scared.
“Come on, but stay close by me,” he said, beginning to walk further into the building, watching me out of the corner of his eye, as if I was something to be guarded like food from a starving man.
I followed him into the lumber-room silently, resisting the urge to high tail it and run in the opposite direction. The metal machinery looked scary and intimidating like something out of a horror movie, despite the fact that they had not been operational in years.
I went to tell Robert than I wanted to leave, but before I could even get the words out, I heard the machinery come alive with a deafening, demonic roar.
“Get down,” Robert demanded, grabbing me, and diving towards the ground. Mere seconds later, one of the giant saws swung in the exact place that we had been only moments ago.
I was dumbstruck lying there on the floor. I couldn’t move. I was too dumbfounded. Even if I had wanted to move though, I wouldn’t have been able to since Robert had his arm pinning me to the dirty wooden floor.
I stared around in awe, looking around the now very active room. Why had the machinery suddenly decided to start up? Did the ghost of some dead lumberjack who had died using the machinery haunt this building? Was that why the park rangers didn’t bother with this building? Now, in hindsight, I wish it really had been. Sometimes the real truth is just too painful to bare.
I glanced up to see movement and then heard the buzz of a chainsaw. Then a nearby beam crashed down, causing the collapse of some of the roof beams.
“Move,” Robert demanded, as he jumped up quickly and dragged me behind him. It was a good thing he did too. I still don’t think I would have been able to move since I was too frightened to even scream.
We raced through the destroyed living room and up the unstable stairs to the second story. I could feel the floor creaking beneath my feet as we ran from the mass with the chainsaw. It felt as if it was only a matter of time before the floor collapsed, and just as that thought entered my mind, Robert stepped on a spot in the floor not sturdy enough to support his weight. With a giant crack, he fell through the floor up to his waist.
I quickly hit the floor on my knees, grabbing Robert’s arms and attempting to pull him up onto the second floor, but I just wasn’t strong enough. I was never strong enough.
“Just go. I can take care of myself better than you think,” Robert hissed, trying to get me to keep running down the hallway. We could hear the chainsaw getting closer and closer, probably somewhere on the stairwell by now, slicing the aged wooden walls as it passed.
I stared at him like he was stupid. There was no way I was leaving him alone hanging for his life with a crazed chainsaw murderer on his way.
“I’ll be fine. Just go,” he said, in a calmer voice this time, attempting to reassure me.
I was going to say something, but just then, the tip of the saw blade appeared through the corner at the top of the stairs.
“Go! Don’t come back for anything until I come for you!” Robert demanded, as I quickly got up and began to run franticly.
As I quickly ran through the nearest doorway in the hall into what looked like an old bedroom, I could hear the chainsaw and a bone chilling hissing noise.
I almost stopped to turn around and go back out the door. I had to make sure Robert was all right, but then I remembered what he said. I knew he’d be mad if I went back to make sure he was ok. He would probably fuss at me when we got out of this, which was worse than anything the chainsaw murderer could do to me.
I found an old wooden cabinet in the corner of the room farthest from the door. I dove in it quickly, shutting the doors behind me only for it to creak open a little so I could see part of the room floor.
I heard the chainsaw collide with a bone chilling sound that sounded like it was cutting through bone and flesh as easily as a butcher’s knife chops through butter. I winced from inside the cabinet. I resist the urge to begin to cry. That would only give my location away that much sooner to my unseen predator.
Suddenly, the chainsaw stopped, but my joy was quickly diminished. The awful racket subsided only for me to hear the creaking of the floorboards as someone walked towards the bedroom door.
I head the creaking as whoever it was slowly swung the door open.
“Come out, come out where ever!” a teasing voice said, coming from the shape creaking the floorboards. The voice was human, but at the same time more menacing and more harmonic than anything I had ever heard before.
“I won’t hurt you any more than your little friend would. Why did you think he dragged you all the way out here in the middle of nowhere in the first place?” the male voice added with a chuckle.
I couldn’t take it anymore. I wanted to back up even farther, but there was nowhere to go but through the wall. My heart was racing faster than it ever had, even when I had sprinted my hardest in the swimming pool. This was the end. And I knew it.
“Oh come on out, my darling. I’ll make it painless. Just one little moment, and it’s all done. You won’t even know I’m killing you! It’ll be pure bliss! Besides, I smell the fear in your blood,” he said with another chuckle, stopping in front of the cabinet. I watched in absolute horror as the legs beneath the old tattered blue jeans that belong to Robert’s murderer began to bend as he slowly opened the cabinet doors, so as to add to my anticipation of the horrible thing that was about to happen.
I was scared. If I had thought I had been scared before this, even if it was on this night, I was wrong. I was terrified, horrified, petrified, and all sorts of other feelings words themselves couldn’t describe. I closed my eyes. If he was going to kill me, he might as well do it without me seeing him.
Just then, a voice came out of the blue, a voice that took me so by surprise I had to open my eyes. I was imagining it, was I not? I had just heard him being chopped in two, but yet I heard him now in my moment of death? I was ecstatic, even if it was my mind playing horrible tricks on me.
“Oh no you don’t!” I heard Robert say, as he busted into the room. I almost breathed a sigh of relief that he was ok and not really dead, but then I remember neither one of us was quite safe yet.
I watched as Robert’s legs lunged forward and the other man’s legs left the floor. I heard the terrible hissing again, but this time I could almost distinguish it as a language so high pitch normal human ears couldn’t quite understand it.
A few seconds later, I heard something hit the wall across from me. I watched as the body of the person that had been chasing us sank down to a level where I could see him clearly from my spot on the floor.
He looked normal, or even handsome if you wanted to go that far. He had a perfectly pale complexion and flickering gold eyes that were winced shut from the pain. It was as if he had been carved from stone, for he looked as perfect as a statue. It was hard for me to believe something so beautiful had tried to kill us.
Then I noticed the thing that snapped me back to reality. Inside his mouth, which he was now opening and closing from the force of it being popped out of place, contained what scared me as much as any chainsaw ever would. No horror movie could ever quite portray the startling, terrifying, and shocking aspect of a vampire’s true fangs.
He smiled as he looked over at me, watching me gape at him in glee.
“What, that shocked? Never seen a vampire’s true teeth before?” he asked, laughing menacing as he stood up.
“You mean he, who brought you all the way back here in Cades Cove has never-” he started, but never finished.
Robert lunged forward, apparently not happy with wherever this vampire was going in his monologue.
“That’s enough for you!” Robert said, grabbing him by the neck, and snapping it in half with his bare hands.
He turned, blood all down the front of his shirt and pants. I could see where the chainsaw had cut into his shoulder by the jagged tear on his shirt, but there wasn’t an open wound. It had already healed into nothing but a fading scar.
“Come on,” he said, extending his hand for me to grab it so he could help me up, but it wasn’t his hand I was looking at.
It was his mouth. He was just like the other guy, the one that now laid twitching in the corner. He had just survived and was already healing from a chainsaw wound. He had thrown a guy ten feet across a room, not to mention broken the guy’s neck with his bare hands, but now, what he was doing now took the cake. He was reaching for me with one hand, while grabbing matches out of his pocket with the other.
Robert was about to set fire to the building, dreaded fire, fire which was my biggest fear until tonight, before my biggest fear became Robert himself. I was terrified again. What had he been planning to do when he had brought me off in the woods by ourselves in the first place? Had he had some alternative motive? Had he planned to not take me back home to South Carolina? Had he planned to tell my parent’s that while we were camping in Tennessee our campground had been attacked by a bear and I just hadn’t managed to escape? Or had he had some other more believable story? I didn’t know. All I knew was I wanted out of there, and the only way out was through him.
“Come on Brandy, please don’t be difficult. I’m not going to hurt you,” he said with a halfhearted smile, before grabbing me, quickly dropping the match, and then jumping out the window before the building exploded in flames behind us as we dropped into the freezing river below…