I saw that we were maybe forty yards from where Dom was fighting, but it was close enough to get instant attention from the writhing mass of necros. A section of them broke off, rushing right at us like the rabid flesh-eaters they were. Christian got into a familiar stance, readying to fight at my back. We both needed space to fight, using such long handled weapons, but we had fought side by side too many times to count, so we positioned ourselves naturally. We waited for a wave of them to hit us, the druids behind us passing us with a few scathing comments about getting our asses into the fight. They were on us in seconds either way.

My battle-axe sang as I swung it high, bringing it down on the first unlucky undead to get within my reach. It’s skin was graying, it’s eyes blood red. It looked like a walking corpse that had been through hell. And that about summed up the life of a necro. They were dead humans who just refused to recognize the fact, feeding on other humans just to buy themselves a little time. It’s head went splat, and I sliced him in half in an almost smooth motion, the noise wet and loud even amidst the loud sounds of battle. Necros were squishy. They were diseased and decaying, rotting from the inside out. They had to feast constantly on human flesh to keep from rotting until they had fallen to pieces. This group seemed particularly squishy, I noted, as I swung hard, decapitating a second monster in a flash.

The trick to fighting with a big-ass weapon in the crowded battleground was to turn every strike into the next attack. I didn’t draw back to hack at the enemy, but just kept pushing, hacking through one undead body, and into the next. It was an effective tactic, considering my strength and my huge weapon, though the technique wouldn’t have worked for many.

Something bit my back, and I screamed, more in anger than pain. I turned, blade sweeping at everything in reach, but the necro was already down, Christian’s sword being drawn from it’s body.

I gave him a nod, then turned back to the chaos. In a blurringly fast movement, I raised the axe above my head, cleaving it down into the thick swarm of Necros. I began to turn my body with the motion, chopping into flesh as I spun. I had never been swarmed by so many before. It was both terrifying and exhilarating. We would take heavy losses in this crush of a battle, but on the other hand, I didn’t need to hold back. I could just let go, becoming the dangerous thing that I was born to be. I let my body and mind go into the trancelike state that lived for battle. I was a berserker, and this was my rage. Things would bleed, and I would glory in it.

Some of the necros held weapons, knives and machetes, or something similar, mostly. But they were a largely untrained fighting force, teeth snapping and arms swinging wildly as I cut down one after another, or even several at a time. A few held guns, but that was uncommon. Guns were just harder to come by, and Necro’s didn’t have a long lifespan, thanks to the druids.

I wasn’t a dancer, except for in battle. Here, I danced, spinning and lunging, swinging and slashing. I even had a song in my head, and I moved to the beat as I killed, and killed.

We had cleared a break in the mob when I paused to take a breath. “Fuck, you’re scary,” Christian said behind me, his voice quiet. “Let’s stay friends, k?”

It broke me a little out of my trance, and I laughed, a rich sound.

I saw Dom maybe thirty yards away. He too, had cleared the first wave, and paused to appraise the carnage. I caught his glance for one endless moment. The look he gave me was…enigmatic. It was hard to say what he meant to tell me with his intense regard. I did learn one thing with that shared look. He still loved to watch me fight.

We moved towards the compound’s spartan buildings, taking the fight into smaller spaces. The force had to split up to accommodate the change.

Christian and I found ourselves leading a small group of non-druid Others. I’m not sure how it happened, but we took the new company in stride, breaking away from the main wave of druid fighters. Druids were an extremely exclusive group, so it wasn’t really a surprise that the leftover Others had banded together.

Christian had a small arsenal of explosives that he was way too excited to use, so our first order of business was to scout from house to house, basically blowing shit up. It was a simple plan. Christian threw the explosive in the door, and I lit it midair. The rest of our group helped us finish off whatever ran screaming out of the building. As far as demo-ing the whole necro settlement went, our plan worked well. We were doing more than our share of destruction. Oh, and as another plus, it gave Christian his blow-up-shit fix for awhile. Win, win.

I swung my two-handed battle-axe in a circle, beheading two escaping necros at once. Yeah, I was showing off. Or rather, showing up Christian. He just gave me a disgruntled look. “Quit hogging,” he muttered, sending an explosive shotgun round into a running Necro as he spoke. It’s head exploded, spraying black liquid everywhere.

I sent Christian a warning look. “Don’t even think about shooting one of those bullets anywhere near me. Those things are a mess. I don’t want any Necro gunk on me.”

He snorted, eyeing me up and down. “You are already covered, you prissy b-”

“Show a little respect,” one of the non-druid Others who’d been following us, spoke. “These things used to be human.”

I turned my head slowly toward the new voice, glaring.

“Uh-oh,” Christian said in a loud whisper when he saw the look on my face.

“Respect? Have you fought these things before?” I asked the man, speaking slowly.

He was a small man with thick black glasses. His nearly gray hair put him past forty. He looked more than a little out of his element in his armored vest, carrying his handgun awkwardly. He glared right back at me, answering. “No, but anything that once had a soul should be shown respect on it’s passing.”

I raised my brows at him. “Is that so? Well, Mr.?”

“Allen.”

“Well, Allen, any soul these things possessed left them a long time ago. Me and Christian here have had more than a modest number of encounters with the necros. It’s been a few years since I’ve been on a necro raid, but let me tell you a little story about the last one we went on. It was at an orphanage the necros had ravaged in the middle of the night. They drank from the bodies of over sixty children. Killed all of the little ones in their beds. Not one of them rose from the dead. Not one. Do you know why that is, Allen?”

He swallowed hard. He looked a little sick as he shook his head.

“Because children don’t turn. In fact, many who’re bitten never turn. You have to make a choice to take another’s life to survive. And the taking of that blood creates another talking zombie. If you never feed, you never turn, you just die. The action that makes them a necro is murder, and most, given the choice, choose to abstain. So I don’t feel too guilty about not showing proper respect to the ones that choose to spread disease and death wherever they go. You wanna show respect, you take the safety off of that thing and take out some of the monsters that demolished an entire human city just weeks ago.”


Tags: R.K. Lilley Heretic Daughters Vampires
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