Edward Owen – Author

Ray Bradbury Challenge #32 – Fiona’s Adventures in Hollyweird – Bad Girl Hunting

If you are not familiar with Fiona, scroll back and read #19 Blood Hunt and #21 Full Moon Fever. This is her ongoing saga and I think my muse earned her chocolate on this one.

Kate

 

#32 Fiona’s Adventures in Hollyweird – Bad Girl Hunting

 

Fiona stretched and considered the sleeping form in the bed next to her. Ricardo’s raven locks spilled over the pillow. She found his lingering need for sleep amusing. She hadn’t slept in a century and a half. It wasn’t even a distant memory. His body was making the adjustment from human to vampire and still needed to rest. No doubt the two hours they had spent having sex had something to do with it. Fiona allowed a small smile to cross her lips. Ricardo was about as sharp as a marble but he was hot as Hell in the sack.

She popped out of bed and headed for her closet. The sun would be down soon and she needed to open her bar, The Green Dragon. Her customers were neither patient nor human and she couldn’t afford the repairs that would be needed if the place was left untended. Dressed in her customary leather pants, scoop neck t-shirt and high heeled boots, Fiona left her condo as the last rays of the sun waned from the sky. Deep purples and golds danced across scattered, puffy clouds. On nights like these, a nostalgic longing to see a full sunset called to the small remnant of her humanity. She had risked it once when she was younger. The burning had kept her writhing in pain for weeks. Her life no longer afforded her such luxuries. The Dragon would not run itself and she had no mentor to bring her food.

Fiona walked through the dark alleys that ran between home and her business. An attractive woman alone in the bowels of West Hollywood might have been a tempting target for muggers, rapists or the dark, shadowy beasts of the night but Fiona was well known to them. It had taken less than a half dozen bodies in the hospital and morgue to establish her reputation. Everyone knew better than to fuck with her. Everyone, apparently, but the bitch standing in the middle of the alley blocking Fiona’s way.

Without slowing her stride, Fiona said, “You are either new or stupid and I don’t have the patience to deal with you in either case.”

The bolt shot from the crossbow, aimed at Fiona’s heart. She caught it an inch from her chest.

“Really? Well then, stupid it is. Let me guess, you’ve seen every episode of ‘Buffy’ and you found out vampires are real. I’m in a hurry so I’m going to give you a break, fan-girl. Get the fuck out of my way before I rip off your head and suck you dry.”

“Daemonem Faeleneus abominatio tibi. Nunc tibi, morte morietur.”

Fiona’s Latin was a bit rusty but the use of her formal name made her stop in place. Whoever this bitch was, she knew more about Fiona than she was comfortable with. She was also threatening to kill her.

“I warned you,” said Fiona.

She rushed toward the woman at a speed that would have made her all but invisible to an ordinary human. She hadn’t traveled ten feet when she struck a thin, silver wire stretched across the alley. A loud bang sounded and two steel weights at either end of the wire shot from the buildings, flying around her and wrapping Fiona in a tight cocoon. The wire burned into the exposed flesh of her arms and neck. Fangs extended, Fiona writhed on the ground howling in pain. The woman sauntered over to where Fiona lay and kicked her in the ribs.

“Not so dangerous now are you, Faeleneus?” the woman said.

Fiona steeled herself against the pain and glared at the woman, her eyes burning with hatred.

“Remember that when I’m ripping off your arms and beating the shit out of you with them, Buffy,” Fiona hissed.

The woman’s cruel laughter echoed off the brick and concrete walls as she pulled a dagger from a sheath on her hip.

“Demon, before long you will beg for death. In the hours until the sun takes you, I will make you suffer.”

The woman knelt down and placed her face next to Fiona’s.

“My name is Sonja Pavlenco. So that you know who is killing you.”

Fiona’s mind raced. Sonja’s accent and the name Pavlenco triggered the start of an old memory but it vanished like smoke in the rain. Sonja raised the dagger and hesitated as if unsure of her target.

“That blade won’t kill me, not even if you stab me through the heart,” Fiona said, defiance dripping from her words.

“No, it will merely make you wish you were dead.” Sonja plunged the blade into Fiona’s stomach, burying it to the hilt.

Pain exploded in Fiona’s brain unlike any she had ever experienced. An inhuman shriek tore from her throat that witnesses later reported hearing half a mile away.

“Wire and blade, titanium with silver oxide coating. Poison will burn through your veins until sun puts an end to you.” Sonja checked her watch. “You have ten hours to live, demon. Then you will burn in Hell.”

Fiona thrashed as the pain spread like liquid fire through her body. She tried to reach the blade but her arms were pinned to her sides. Her struggles only caused the wire to cinch tighter around her.

Hours later as the sky began to lighten she closed her eyes and resigned herself to her fate. Through her stupor came a vague shadow and the sensation of the knife being pulled free.

“Damn, Fee, you musta really pissed someone off this time,” said a familiar voice. Several sharp pings rang out and the wire released its grip on her. “We gotta get outta here ‘fore you get crispy fried.”

A pair of bony arms slid beneath her body and lifted her from the street. Fiona turned and stared into Brandon’s sunken eyes.

“Thanks. Guess I owe you a raise,” she said. “Right after I kill that Pavlenco bitch.”

As the name crossed her lips a memory returned to her. Viktor Pavlenco…

 

To be continued…

 

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