The Nosferatu Adventures
page 216, chapter 216
Out of Time
Edward yawned as he poured the coffee into the blue mug, sloshing it everywhere causing him to jump back. The laptop sat there mocking him, his cell phone buzzing with alerts, texts and other such nonsense. The stack of cold covered trade paperbacks threatening to fall over if he moved the wrong way. There was a knock at the door, consistent, long demanding.
Sighing, the dark haired male shuffled his way the ten feet to see who it was. Though he already knew, it was his publicist. No one else would be so annoying at 8:30 in the morning.
"Hi Roger." he mumbled as he opened the door, sidestepping just enough to let the man in before re-locking the deadbolt and the chain.
"Damn you're paranoid." the other male said cheerfully as he chewed on a long since wasted piece of gum. He was dying for a smoke, but had technically quit a year ago. Except for the occasional one he sneaked when he's wife was not home, or when he was waiting for a new client to show up who were usually late for meetings, or when he went to the strip club for his lunch break and drank five beers instead of ordering that burger he always claimed to order. So technically he'd quit smoking. "You're not dressed. We have to be there in twenty minutes, and you're not dressed." Opening the cupboard Roger grabbed himself a mug pouring what was left of the coffee pot into it. Slurping, he screwed up his face putting the cup down with a loud clank. "Tastes like diesel fuel. How can you drink this stuff so thick?"
"I don't think I can do this." Edward mumbled scratching his ass. "I haven't slept in a week. Well, not more then about three hours combined." his blue eyes were dull as he took a sip of his own coffee, daring to look over the rim of the mug at Roger.
The other man shook his finger at him, digging into his coat pocket handing him a small pill bottle.
"Take this. Just two. And get dressed we're leaving. You can't blow this one, not this time. You have no idea who's arse I had to kiss to get you this interview." He watched as the younger man shuffled his way then into the bathroom, listening to the neighbours screaming in the apartment next door, to the dogs barking upstairs. Shaking his head, the older man swore. Edward had been his most popular author for the last ten years, selling out wherever he went. The teen-young adult section of the stores plastered his photo on every shelf along with millions of copies of his books. That was until two years ago.
When the nightmares had started.
At first, Roger had thought the guy was just under a bit of stress, working too hard, touring too much and told him to take a few weeks off. And at first a break did him some good, seemed to rejuvenate him. Even talked about beefing up the stories with real folklore, wanting to tackle something harder then just teenaged vampires. Decided to use the nightmares to his advantage.
Walking around the apartment, Roger shook his head again as he studied the items that now sat on the bookshelf like a display of personal demons. Careful not to get too close lest they come to life. There were gargoyles, skulls, candles, small trinket boxes shaped like coffins. Nothing too out of the ordinary for a gothic writer. But the large book that now sat under glass in the middle of the display, on the black velvet cloth with the pentagram embroidered on it and the five onyx crystals that were placed at each point of the pentagram, the wolf teeth and claws that lined the front of the glass box. The worn tarot cards that took up space on the right of the shelf some Shaman was said to have given Edward. The strange jars of powders and herbs that sat on the second shelf beside a selection of small bones sent chills through him.
The bathroom door opened forcing Roger to look over his shoulder seeing Edward cross into the bedroom to finish getting ready. Smoothing down his tie, he ran his hand over his forehead clearing his throat. The need for a cigarette was gnawing at him forcing him to move some more, heading towards the coffee table that was scattered with notes. Flipping through them, his mouth fell slack. There were drawings throughout the pages all it would seem of the same woman. Names crossed out beside one drawing in particular.
"You've met her." Edward's voice said calmly as if the echo of a ghost. Roger held the page up asking who she was? Shrugging the dark haired male ran his hand through his hair as if preening for the piece of art. "My heroine."
He suddenly squeezed his eyes shut bringing his hand up to pinch the bridge of his nose grunting in pain.
"Those headaches again?" Roger asked reaching mindlessly for a cigarette which he didn't have any of. Padding down his pockets he sighed as he popped another piece of gum into his mouth.
"Yeah. I'll be fine. Need some fresh air and maybe another coffee." He sniffed.
"Well you can get both on the way we've got to go."
They found themselves standing in line at a coffee shop on the main floor of the building where they were scheduled to meet the editor, nearly late for the interview. Roger checking his messages every two seconds, hoping praying that the guy hadn't decided to cancel, hadn't decided that Edward's behavouir as of late was too much to handle, half way listening to a couple talking behind them.
There had been another set of attacks last night just after the bars closed which would have put them around 3am. Some kind of wild animals from the way the victims were ripped apart. Roger cringed as he listened, waiting for the girl behind the counter to stop trying to flirt with Edward and just give them their orders. It never stopped amazing him, how no matter what was going on in his life, Edward had admirers falling over him. The guy could walk out in the middle of the street in filthy rags covered in blood and still, all he needed to do was smile and women were throwing themselves at him. Like moths to a flame. He could be Jack the Ripper for all the world knew, but yet Edward never seemed to have to work for companionship. Like he had them under a spell.
Roger leaned over tapping him on the shoulder. "We've got to get upstairs or we'll miss the meeting." he pushed the younger male towards the door just as someone else came into the coffee shop with a newspaper in hand. The headline once again about the animal attacks that had happened, this time with black and white photos. He didn't get a good look as they were rushing out, but the newspaper guy slammed slightly into Roger's shoulder just enough to tilt the paper. This had been the fourth attack in under a month, and this one had been a block away from Edward's apartment. This time, there was said to be a witness. A man claiming he'd seen a large 6 foot wolf running around the area just minutes afterwards. "Wolf man strikes again." he read the headline as they headed towards the elevator. "Huh." Roger made a noise as he pressed the up button. "Not even a full moon." he smiled as he shook his head, the elevator doors closing.
"Sure if this was a hollywood movie. The moon has nothing to do with real shapeshifting. Folklore is filled with stories of Shamans changing while in deep trance state." Edward said from the corner of the elevator where he was practically hiding, one leg crossed over the other, examining his nails.
"Do me a favour huh? None of this voodoo crap for like the next half hour. Can you do that? Just get through the meeting without talking like a witch doctor." the elevator binged and the doors opened letting on the next group of people as they pushed their way off.
"Sure but I don't know how much I'll be able to say about the new manuscript then." he shrugged tossing the now empty coffee cup into the trash as they made their way into the office. They were shown in instantly by the secretary, who in the course of the minute and a half walk down the hallway, managed to unbutton the top button of her blouse and hike up her skirt just a half inch; in hopes of getting Edward's number. He barely glanced at the poor tart as he counted his footsteps, turning back to look at the front of the office, one palm pressed to his chest.
Entering the back room, Edward jumped back a half step. There was a large painting that seemed to cover half the one wall. It was a simple white canvas against a white wall. In fact, everything else in the room was white. The table, glass and steel, the chairs white leather, the rug a white pattern of circles. It hurt his eyes.
"Great you're on time." a voice said from the far end of the room. They turned to see a guy not much older then Edward himself, sitting in a large white chair that had what looked like wings coming up from the top of it. Like play-doh that's been stretched in all directions. His back was turned to them, a television screen propped up on a filing cabinet and a video game box on the floor. He held the only black item in his hand, the gamer as he leaned forward making a noise, the game itself on mute. Putting it on the floor, he turned around standing. "Can I offer you anything before we start?" the dark haired male said stretching. He wasn't much more then 5 foot 10, dressed in dark jeans and a grey t-shirt that had the word Detroit across it. "I'm Loki by the way."
Tune in again for another installment of the Nosferatu Adventures starring your heroine...me(straight up story. Well, you wanted to know what the Seer has been up to while missing...)