He twirled the knife, saw the echo of himself reflected in the silver blade...a young man. A human. Careless. Free. Laughing. Spiders danced to the tune, spinning their webs faster and faster, turning the crypt into a cocoon. Trapping him. A helpless fly. He lay back on the tomb that was his bed, letting the knife drop from his fingers. He listened to it skitter across the broken stones like tiny feet. Spider feet. Spider feet...long and narrow...sharp. Like teeth. Teeth that had no use anymore...
He laughed...this time it wasn't an echo. It was the creature he'd become...an old vampire. A monster. Still careless. Certainly not free. No, he was chained, now. The fly. Caught in the web.
He watched a black widow spinning slowly across the ceiling...a delicate ballet...twirls and loops and slides. This spider worked alone, killing any male who tried to get close and interrupt the flow. It was slender...graceful...deadly. Beautiful. The red hourglass on its back was as red as a woman's lips.
He rolled over, bringing his knees up to his chest, taking care not to fall off the narrow rock lid. The back of his head throbbed, reminding him of promises broken...of betrayals...of the price of his services. He was an impotent insect now...tossed from cobweb to cobweb. And the black widow found him too low a creature to kill. He was no male. He was no threat. He just was.
He could just see her...standing in the doorway...twirling the knife by its gilt-edged hilt. "Come into my parlor," she'd whispered, her eyes bright and green like the envy of days gone by. Her skin pale and creamy against the black leather pants and the black tank top. Blood red mouth curved with disdain and boredom. A harbinger of death had never looked so lovely.
"This is my parlor," he'd corrected, leaning casually against one of the ivy draped walls, trying to mask the fear traipsing up his spine with arrogance.
"What. Ever." She'd shrugged...and let the blade fly with one flick of her too-thin wrist.
He'd caught it...just inches from his chest. As she'd known he would.
She'd simply laughed.
He stared down at where the knife had landed after his limp fingers had let it go...standing perfectly upright, vibrating slightly...the tip of the blade embedded in the crack of one stone tile. He'd felt the imprint of her hand on the hilt...winding around him in wispy threads. Tighter and tighter.
The fly moaned softly...shutting his eyes...begging for the reflection of a man he'd once been...begging for release from the web...and whimpered.
"I love you."
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