Vampire 2.0 – Unauthorized User

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Unauthorized User

Franks stumbled, tripping over his own uncooperative feet and crashing to the marble floor. His glasses dropped from his face, sliding into the corner and, from the sound, shattering. No matter. He didn’t need them any longer.
“Mein Gott,” he whispered, as he turned himself over and sat up, brushing slowly at his nose and the bubble of blood forming there.
The things he had seen in the supposedly secret lair had been impressive enough from an architectural perspective, but had not seemed of much interest to the doctor; he had come for the secret knowledge of what his ostensible lord and employer had been up to, and home decor had seemed just a trifle underwhelming. But when he had approached the dais in the center of the room, had caressed it with trembling hands – still fearful that some of the preposterous “magic” that some of the other minions were always on about might be in play, despite his own disbelief in such concepts – things had changed. Oh so many things.
Not the least of it was his stance on the supernatural. Before, he had considered there to be two things in existence: the scientific, and the scientific that had yet to be proven or properly explained. He had devoted his life to exploring the latter concept, constantly pushing against the boundaries of accepted science until science itself had pushed back, shoving him straight out of the academics halls that he had attempted to carve his name into. Tepes’ employment offer had afforded him greater freedoms – even if it had come tempered with the knowledge that he must suffer many discourses on their primitive belief in concepts such as magic and demons – that had culminated in the experiments that had restored even the dark lord himself. But now he was going to have to reevaluate. Apparently there was a third category after all. Science beyond science, ideas so potent that the concept of sorcery was no longer outside the boundaries of his carefully ordered existence.
He had to accept such things, as after all, did he not command some of those forces himself, now?
Vlad’s resurrection seemed so paltry now. So utterly pointless. Of course, had Franks not been there, brought the vampire back from whatever land dead monsters roamed, he wouldn’t have had the opportunity to obtain the knowledge and power he now held. Certainly, the ideas that danced in his fevered brain, the concepts of what he could do – and with merely a whim, no need for time and resources and pulling his hair out by the roots, now – were far greater than keeping one mangled undead corpse ambulatory. But still, they owed their existence to that particular corpse, which gave him a certain fondness for it.
Even if he was now going to have to destroy it.
After all, the world couldn’t have two like him, now could it? That wouldn’t do at all. Tepes was going to have to stand aside; knowing him as he did, Franks knew that the vampire would sooner die. Franks intended to make good on that.
“And now for something… completely different!”
His voice was no longer marred by the accent of his youth. No more a dramatic stage whisper. Now it was roughened, coarse, demanding with a note of command instead of the shrieking petulance he had trained himself not to hear in his old, puling demands.
Trembling, Franks rose. Closing his eyes he could see them. The armies of the night, arrayed across the world. Could sense where each and every one of them was; a whiff of mangoes here, the moon-cast shadow of a sole farmer on a rice paddy there, a figure obscured by the exhaust of hundreds of vehicles from a third venue. All of them bound to him by nothing but his will and the faintest effort of concentration.
Franks’ lips pulled upwards, twisting his face into a macabre clown’s grimace. In his mind he could hear the hum of an open line, a telephone receiver that spoke directly to the subhuman souls of all the supernatural monstrosities of the world. A command would be impossible for them to deny. A suggestion would bring with it gleeful compliance. He had only to issue that command, that suggestion.
He could sense them listening, the way a dog might sit with its head cocked as the master approached. He could also hear their own thoughts, their own desires, pulsing in that open line.
“Free us,” it echoed, over and over again.
Vlad’s commands chafed them, and they wanted nothing more than to throw over his draconian tyranny and do as their natures commanded.
He ran a dry tongue over his lips, not noticing – and unlikely to be concerned if he had – the coarseness of their texture, or the way they were turning a pallid blue against his white flesh. His teeth loomed out of his jaw, yellowed tombstones that some vandal had seen fit to knock askew and deface.
Franks issued his command.
“Do as thou wilt shall be the whole of the law.” Crowley’s old declaration seemed somehow appropriate for the situation to Franks.
From that internal connection, he sensed a cheer of volume and proportion that he could barely have imagined before. No more would others laugh, or mock him, or cast him aside. Even had they wanted to, it would be impossible. The monsters needed a master, and so long as that master existed, they would revere and serve him.
I have become a God among them, Franks thought. Punctuating it with a giggle, he began to totter down the hallway to his lap, unmindful of the hitch in his gait, or how his legs seemed to have grown thick and heavy, the feet boulders that rocked the mansion’s foundation as they thudded down with each step. He thought only of the one addendum to the command he should make.
Opening that mental line once more, he spoke again. There was less fanfare, but still a sense of eagerness to execute whatever command was coming. Some, perhaps, felt that issuing the decree was making Franks just as much of a tyrant as his predecessor. Perhaps there was a stripe of that in his nature, but this command would ultimately benefit them all, and was the only such demand he intended to force upon his new children.
Satisfied as a hush fell over the mental link, he reinforced the command, then once more. He smirked at the mental chatter he was picking up from the beings who now shared a portion of his mind.
“Do this, and be forever free.”
He closed the mental link with the same curtness he would have used in slamming shut an offensive textbook and continued on his way.
Vlad would be his soon. After that? The world, and all that lay within it, natural and unnatural, was his oyster.

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