A/N: Translations at the bottom
“So tell me Nicomaine, how did he know you? Like the real you?” Val asked.
A few months back…
Richard was standing in front of an old building in Bulacan. He was looking at the address while confirming with waze if he is at the right location.
“Huh. Weird. It says 3rd floor.” He looked at the paper again and sighed. “Here goes nothing.” He went inside the abandoned looking building. Much to his surprise, the inside was very much different. It was far from old-looking. The design and the interior can be compared to those of a hotel lobby minus the people, the furniture and the guest. The only thing he can see is an elevator in the middle of the huge empty space.
He walked slowly towards the elevator and press the open button. He went inside and saw no floor numbers, he only saw a button that says TOP.
Ding… Richard went out of the elevator and walked towards a door. Being a reporter and a lock picker on the side –when he needs to get exclusive information about a story, he recognized the lock on the door. It was a Hi-Tech RF Card Digital Door Lock by Yale.
Wow. Digital lock. Astig ah. He thought.
He touched a button on the door lock and he heard a beep from the other side of the door. He did not notice a hidden camera placed right above the door lock.
The door opened and a young looking lady was standing in the doorway.
“Please come in.” She said. He stepped inside and the lady closed the door behind her. “I’m looking for the PI (Private investigator).” He said as he sat down after the girl motioned for him to do so.
“I am the PI.” She said. “But you look so young.” He responded. “So?” She said and raised an eyebrow and whispered “Maiale presuntuoso!” (1) Richard did not seem to hear it. “Sorry. I did not mean to offend you.” He said seeing Nicomaine raised eyebrow. “Naisip ko lang na you wouldn’t be that young.” Richard explained. “Well then, let’s just say I’m gifted.” The lady moved closer and held her hand out. “Nicomaine Dei. You are Richard I suppose?” He took her hand. “Yes Dei, I’m Richard.”
“So then, let’s go down to business.” Nicomaine said. “You have a job for me?”
“Ah so that’s how you guys met.” Valeen said after removing her mouth from the neck of her food. She retracted her fangs and wiped her mouth.
“Bakit mo ba kase naisipan pang bumalik dito sa Pilipinas at magtayo ng PI company? You were doing so well as an a singer in Como.” Val asked her.
“Val, I can’t stay there any longer. The people are already asking what my secret is. Why I am still young looking despite my supposed age. Somebody also saw a picture of me back in 1940 and was asking how I’m related to her since we look so much alike. Alangan namang sabihin ko na ako din yan. Di kase ako nag-e-age talaga. Diba? It’s imperative that I leave Como.” Nicomaine explained. “E ‘la cosa giusta da fare. (2)” She said.
“Se lo dici tu , la signora Giusti.“(3) Val responded. “So what happened next? Why did you tell him? Why did you tell him what you are?”
A few months back… (3 days later)
“I have a lead.” Nicomaine told Richard on the phone. “The target is in Tuguegarao. When do you want to…” She stopped mid-sentence. “I’ll be at your place in roughly two hours.” Richard said on the other line cutting her off. He ended the call from her end.
Like what he said, in two hours Richard was standing outside her door. She opened it for him and he directly went inside and sat down.
“So when are we going to Tuguegarao?” He asked directly. “Masyado pang mainit dun, maybe next week.” Nicomaine answered, she’s really avoiding too much heat, as it will require her to consume more blood than usual. “I’m paying you to get this job done. So I am also expecting to have results as soon as possible, not next week.” Richard said.
Nicomaine sighed. “Fine. We’ll go tomorrow.” Bahala na si batman. Hopefully we find what we are looking for fast. She thought.
The following day, Nicomaine and Richard travelled to Tuguegarao. Nicomaine booked a flight via PAL (Philippine Airlines) after he left her place. They just landed roughly 5-10 minutes ago yet Nicomaine can already feel her draining due to the heat. When she checked her smartphone’s weather app it said 39 degree celsius.
“I’m fucked.” She uttered silently. “What?” Richard asked her. “Nothing.”
Clear skies, check.
Scorching heat, check.
Thirst, will have a check mark very soon.
PS: Translations are done using https://translate.google.com
1) Conceited pig!
2) It’s the right thing to do
3) If you say so, Ms. Righteous.
Image from tripadvisor.com
14. Thirsty? Not anymore.
They’ve been travelling by foot for almost an hour now. The sun is already getting the best of Nicomaine.
They were following a lead about a politician that’s currently in hiding as he is involved in a lot of drug related cases. They were following his convoy to their hideout when suddenly another part started firing their guns towards the politicians vehicle and they were in the middle of the exchange. Richard was sitting next to her on the passenger seat. She decided to cover him with her body. She was shot twice, one on the left shoulder and the other on her thigh. On normal conditions she will heal in no time, but since she has been thirsty and the heat is not helping.
She’s getting thirstier by the minute and they’re in the middle of a rice field as of the moment. The crossfire lasted for a few minutes. She had Richard crouched and she used her body to shield him, hence the gunshots.
Richard notice her gunshots after a while and started to panic.
“Richard, calm down.” She told him.
“How can I calm down? You have two gunshot wounds. You can ran out of blood. We’re far from the city.” He said as he drove the car to nowhere.
“Find a place we can stay. Focus.” She told him whimpering, not because of pain but because of hunger.
After what seemed like an eternity for Nicomaine, Richard stopped the car. Opened the door and walked to her side. He found a house. It looked abandoned but Richard still called out.
“Tao po?” He said and knocked.
“Tao po! Tulong.” He tried to open the door and it did.
He slowly went inside the house and saw an old sofa. He had Nicomaine sit down and tried to look for anything he can use to help her out.
“Richard…” Nicomaine called for him.
“Richard…” Nicomaine sounded very weak. “I need you…” She said softly.
Richard immediately ran to her side and knelt. “Dei, I’m here.” He said and touch her hand. “Bakit mo ba kase sinalo yung mga bala na para sa akin?” He said, his tears began to form around his eyes.
“Because I can.” Nicomaine said. “Now, this is going to sound really weird. You probably will ran off scared. But I’m not bad.” She said which got Richard confused. “I need your help.” She continued. “I need your blood. Please?” Nicomaine said, almost begging. She’s really thirsty. Of course, she can get that from Richard without asking but she doesn’t want him to think that she’s a monster.
“What are you talking about Dei?” He asked confused.
“Do you trust me?” She asked.
Richard looked at her and he can swear he saw her eye color changed. It was darker than usual. “You’re scaring me Dei.”
“Do you trust me Richard?” SHe asked again, her voice deeper.
“Ye-yes.” He said.
“Sorry Richard. It’s either I won’t control my hunger and you die or you trust me and we both live.” She said, her fangs slowly showing. “Give me your arm.” She said and held her hand out for Richard’s arm.
“I’m sorry Richard and thank you.” She held on to his arm and let her fangs create puncture wounds on it.
The moment Nicomaine started sucking Richard’s blood he felt desired, loved even. Instead of feeling pain, he was feeling aroused. It was like the first time he kissed a girl, exciting, liberating. Richard already had his head thrown backwards in ecstasy, in pure bliss.
After three minutes, Nicomaine had to stop herself because it’s either that or she drains Richard of his blood. When she took of her fangs from his skin, he growled in protest.
“I guess you know what I am now.” Nicomaine said.
“I do. And you owe me something for taking my blood.” Richard said, acting calm though Nicomaine can hear his heartbeat going off the roof.
“I know.” Nicomaine said and smiled.
“So that’s how it is Val.” Nicomaine said.
“So I guess you are in a deep shit Nicomaine.” Val said and walked away, but before she was out of sight she said, “If you need help getting his memories erased, you know where to find me.”
Nicomaine stood up and went to the door. “Bye Val. See you next time.” And closed the door behind her.
15. Cold Treatment
It’s been three days since Nicomaine last saw Richard.
Three days after she refused to be his girlfriend’s sire.
Three days after Michelle, his girl, died.
Three days of him has not returning her calls.
Nicomaine decided to drop by Richard’s unit to see how he was doing.
It was eight in the morning, she decided to visit early to avoid the heat of the sun.
“Richard?” she called from outside the door. She can hear his heartbeat so she knows he’s home. “i’m coming in.” She said and was about to turn the knob when she heard Richard.
“Don’t come in. I don’t want to see you. Kasalanan mo why she’s not here anymore.” Richard said and she can smell alcohol from outside the door.
“Are you drunk?’ She said and opened the door.
She saw everything was a mess, far from the insanely clean house that she’s used to seeing. Pictures were scattered on the floor. Bottles of different wines, rum, and vodka also scattered.
“What are you doing?’ Nicomaine kneeled in front of Richard who’s currently sitting on the sofa with another bottle of vodka in his hand. “Ano magpapakamatay ka ba? Ha?” she asked.
“If I am about to die, will you turn me?” he asked, looking at Nicomaine with his sad eyes. She was stunned. “Will you?” She can’t answer. She can’t let him die but she doesn’t want to subject him to a fate same as hers.
“Di ka makasagot?” Richard is now crying.
“Dei, I miss her so much.” She sat beside him and held his hand tightly. “I’m so sorry Richard but I can’t have her have the same fate as I have.”
“Do you know why I’m crying Dei? Nagiguilty ako. Kase she died not knowing the truth. Oh God. I hope she can forgive me. I am not even able to say I love her before she dies, because I don’t anymore.” Richard sobbing is breaking Nicomaine’s dead heart.
“Richard…” Nicomaine was about to say something else when she was cut off by Richard’s lips capturing hers. He tasted of of vodka, it’s intoxicating, but Nicomaine had to push him away.
“Stop it Richard.” She said. “Lasing ka lang.”
“No Dei, no.” Nicomaine guided him, rather forced him to stand up and brought him to the bathroom. He positioned him under the shower and turned it on. He dropped the bottle and hugged her.
She ended up wet, with him, under the shower.
Richard was shaking possibly due to the coldness of the water dripping from the shower, or probably due the coldness of Nicomaine’s body as he was hugging her.