Jarvis watched his Master pace the house for three days. He slept little and feasted on bottle after bottle of blood before snapping each time he was spoken too. He’d never seen Dante like this and it worried him. Finally he could stand it no more and investigated Dante’s er.. things, finding a receipt for the perfume that the other man had sent to the woman ‘Beth’. He smiled triumphantly as he reached for the phone and ordered flowers to be sent to her too.
His Master had been alone for too long and if this ‘Beth’ stopped him from brooding then he was going to do all that he could to get them together. With this in his mind he moved over to the phone on the wall and picked it up, dialling.
“Hello,” he murmured when the call was answered. He went on to order an impressive bouquet of flowers before looking at the receipt for the perfume and changed his mind. “Actually no, make that daisies.” he confirmed. “Yes, a big bouquet of daisies.”
He gave the store the card number to pay for them and the address, repeating it carefully over the phone before ending the call and hanging up. Turning he moved to sit at the long table and began polishing the silver, his eyes straying to the stairs as though he were expecting his Master to be walking down them to confront him about what he’d just done. A shiver of guilt went through him and he frowned before looking down at the silver. He gazed at his own reflection remembering.
The steam from the train spilled out on to the platform like a rolling grey sea. He’d jumped back from it, scared by the hiss sounding from the train’s engine and the smell of this gaseous cloud. Clutching tight at his mother’s hand he looked up at her with frightened eyes.
“We’re going on a little train journey, won’t that be fun, eh.” She whispered to him, her eyes frantically searching the crowd. She saw the hideous men in uniform hounding them into cattle cars and frowned wondering how she could save her son.
“Mama, I don’t like this.” Jerzy whispered.
“I know my little man.” She eased down to whisper back to him. How could she explain to a 3-year-old that she was scared too? She cast frantic eyes around looking here and there before spotting what looked like a coal shed to the side. It was her only chance she thought knowing that they would be walking past it. She began tugging on Jerzy’s hand and he looked up at her his brown eyes full of fear. “See,” she whispered pointing quickly.
He followed her gaze before looking at her once more.
“Mama?” he whispered.
“We are going to play a little hide and seek.” She whispered to him, “Whatever happens my little man, I want you to be quiet and stay hiding.”
“Remember, be quiet,” she urged again slipping away from the crowd and guiding him into the coal shed. Looking around she spotted a pile of empty sacks and moved quickly over to them picking one up and giving it a shake before she looked at her son, “It’s a lovely game this, eh?”
He lifted frightened eyes to her watching what she was doing carefully moaning softly when she lifted him into the sack and carried him to the far corner of the coalshed. She hid him amongst the coals quickly piling up the black rocks to shield him.
“Remember to hide here quietly,” she urged him again, “Jerzy, I love you, hear that, your Mama loves you so much,” she added in a breathless voice.
He listened carefully hearing only silence and then a shuffling noise before the noise of the train moving out of the station. The rattles and bumps as the train moved off frightened Jerzy but he remained quiet, biting on his lip to stifle his cries. Mama told him to be quiet and he must do what his Mama told him. He hoped she would come and find him again soon he was getting hungry.
He must have fallen asleep because when he awoke it was dark and quiet. He wondered if he should move, his legs were tired and cramped and he was hungry. Where was his Mama? He felt tears stinging his eyes as he peered through the sacking easing it down a little.
“I can smell you,” a voice hissed in the darkness.
“Please,” Jerzy cried out before biting his lip and falling back into silence. His Mama told him to be quiet and he’d just disobeyed her.
“It’s ok,” the voice said in funny accented polish, “I’m hiding too.”
Jerzy hopped on one foot and then the next before he reached up and risked lowering the sacking so he could see properly.
“Where is my Mama?”
Dante eased forward away from the dark shadows he would never know that to the little boy it looked as though the shadows simply slipped away from him.
“I do not know but how about you come with me and we go get you some food?” Dante murmured feeling strangely attached to the small boy.
“My Mama told me to hide,”
“Like in the game, si?”
“Si?” Jerzy tried out the strange word his mouth twisting on the syllables.
“It means ‘tak’,” Dante nodded before reaching out and moving the protective layer of coal from around the young boy. Then he lifted the boy up and put him to one side, spotting the small toy the boy had been clutching on to at the bottom of the sack. Lifting it out he shook it before kneeling down and placing it into the boy’s hands.
“I found you,” Dante muttered in fractured polish, “Now we go get our dinner.”
“I’m sorry little man but I don’t think that your Mama is going to be able to find you tonight.”
“How will she know where to find me?”
Dante frowned before he picked up a lump of coal and walked over to the far wall.
“What is your name?” he asked quickly.
Dante nodded and began writing on the wall the boy’s name and then the name of a hotel in the town. He would make arrangements for the hotel to take and pass on any messages not that he expected the boy’s mother to turn up. Dropping the coal to the floor after he finished with it he wiped his hand down his trousers before turning and looking at the boy.
“We go now, some food, yes?” he murmured walking to the boy and lifting him up.
Peering through the darkness as he exited the coal shed he morphed into the night carrying the small boy to safety.
Jarvis sighed as he remembered. He could still smell the dank coal that had surrounded him and protected him from the Nazi’s until Dante had slid out of the darkness to carry him away. His mother was gone, never to re-enter his life, one of the nameless millions killed in Auschwitz and he was the orphan boy who’d been saved by a Vampire. A lonely vampire, who deserved to be happy, and have something other than the half-life he currently led.