It would have been cause for concern, had either of them the sense of mind to detect the delicate symptoms. This time, his arrival on the island was no different.
The bat did not linger in the main hall, loitering among raucous patrons and wide-eyed slaves. He avoided the main entrance altogether, slipping in alongside a gust of howling rain-splatter from a side door.
Like most buildings old enough to have spirits lodged in the walls, the Tether seemed sometimes to have a capricious mind of its own. It led him from the bubbling murmur of the main hall to a dimly light corridor, past darkened portraits of patrons and proprietors who lacked the decency to turn their eyes away from the salacious dealings of the private rooms. The warm smell of smoke and the heat of flushed bodies faded along with the sound of their laughter.
The walls were more somber here, the air stiller. They were rarely-used passages, their corners kept clear of cobwebs and carpet swept free of dust out of obligation and an outdated sense of propriety.
The bat’s movement lacked his usual animal grace. They were stiff and distracted, as though he were a machine with rust-choked joints. His dark wings were wrapped around him in a loose, unkempt sprawl that shielded most of his torso from view underneath the blot of clawed finger and black membrane. One hand was lost in the shuffle of wings while the other rested lightly along the wall, although whether it was for balance or to ease his blind navigation was impossible to say.
He came to a weary stop at a juncture in the hall and steadied himself with a second hand on the wall. He closed his black-water eyes and inhaled deep with lips parted to reveal startlingly clean ivory. His hair was a mess of unkempt cobwebs still damp from the rain. The bones of his skull jutted a little too clearly beneath the stretched skin.
The bat exhaled and took another labored step forward. His hand left a dark trail on the wall that followed him in streaks down the hall, his steps silent despite the effort it took to make them. The vampire paused to inhale again, his large ears trembling atop his skull.
The omen was close. He could sense it in the storm-cloud electricity haunting the air, in the faint scent of wet leaves and black mud, and when he closed his blighted eyes he could nearly see the tremble of his paper-thin heart in its cage of bone.
Another step forward and he turned his head, mane bristling like a stalking wolf. His eyes gleamed a sickly silver where the light struck. The rain lashed the windows.
“Fabien.” It was a whispered summons, nearly a hiss. His spine straightened and both hands disappeared in the folds of his thick wings.
With eyes glowing, he waited.
Last edited by Tariq on Sat Sep 17, 2016 4:23 pm; edited 1 time in total