Tags: #vampire, #vampire love, #anne rice, #vampire series, #vampire books, #vampire action, #vampire book for young adults, #blood drinker, #vampire legends, #vampire action adventure, #vampire army, #vampire dating, #vampire aliens, #vampire night, #vampire angel, #vampire actionadventure
Lowen the Dark
Copyright © 2014
This is a work of fiction.
Names, characters, places, and incidents either are the products of
the imagination of the creator(s) or are used
Under copyright law, if you
are not the copyright owner of this work, you are forbidden to
reproduce, create derivative works based on this work, download,
distribute copies of the work, decompile this work without Becket’s
express written permission.
In 2011, Anne Rice and I
began talking about the development of a new breed of blood
The first ground rule was
that they had to have an entirely different cosmology from her
other supernatural stories.
She and I spent many weeks
emailing back and forth, sharing copious detailed notes. We had
several energetic lunches and dinners, whence we discussed the
foundation and framework of the story you’re about to read. We
swapped ideas about the strengths and weaknesses of these new blood
drinkers, ideas about the characters themselves as well as their
back-stories, and more ideas about potential narrative
One of the amazing facets
of Anne’s writing method is that she seems to devote almost as much
time to selecting the right names for things as she does to
carefully crafting the narrative. Both go hand in hand, I’ve
learned from her. She’s taught me much. The right name is as
But what name would we call
our new blood drinkers?
One day, after we’d spent
weeks thinking about what to call this new breed, I came into her
office as she thumped closed a Latin textbook. She beamed at me
with her irresistible smile. She told me she knew what to call our
blood drinkers. She had not chosen a Latin word, but had developed
a new word from Latin phraseology.
What was the new word she’d
Vivicanti,” she said as her
I loved the word
Our blood drinkers will be
called,” Anne Rice announced: “The Blood Vivicanti.”
Then it was my job to write
My anger against you will
rest. My jealousy shall depart from you. I will be calm and will be
angry no longer. Because you have not remembered the days of your
youth, but have enraged me with all these things, I have returned
your deeds upon your head.
Lowen the Dark
Wyn and Ms.
stood before the Black Building.
It was night. They were wearing dark sunglasses, gray clothes, and
They looked confident. They
The Black Building was
Lowen’s. It was 150 floors from ground to top. More floors delved
deep underground – like the Mines of Moria.
Balrogs were thankfully
Lowen the Dark Man had
stolen the Black Building through manipulation, trickery, and by
twisting almost an entire city into his little army of Sleeper
His Sleeper Devils were not
And it would not be
accurate to say that they were entirely mindless. They had minds.
They were simply forbidden to use them often.
For some, it was not a big
Lowen would let his Sleeper
Devils think of him, and not much else. They thought of him and
they worshiped him, as if he were King Nebuchadnezzar at the outset
of his madness.
Wyn and Ms. Crystobal
entered the Black Building.
The main lobby was packed
with Sleeper Devils.
Wyn and Ms. Crystobal had
been prepared for a good fight. So they were a little surprised and
a lot cautious when none of the Sleeper Devils tried to stop
The Sleeper Devils watched
Wyn and Ms. Crystobal enter. They gathered around the two and moved
with them through the main lobby.
Playing in the background
was an elevator music rendition of Michael Jackson’s
Wyn and Ms. Crystobal
walked toward a corner of the lobby where there were stairs,
elevators, and the security office.
Two very large Sleeper
Devils blocked the way. Their skin was ashy and they smelled like
rot. One was wearing a tattered suit. The other was wearing a
grocer’s uniform. They might have been simple and kind people in
life, before Lowen turned them into cannon fodder for his personal
host of slaves. Now they were decaying versions of the good things
they had been.
They would not let Wyn and
Ms. Crystobal pass because Lowen was screaming inside their heads
that he would never let them die if they disobeyed him.
Lowen’s power over them was
not to threaten them with death. Death would have been the
The reflection of the two
Sleeper Devils glinted in Wyn’s sunglasses. His expression was
unflinching and fearless.
Wyn moved faster than
sound. He flung the two Sleeper Devils into a nearby pillar. Their
bodies crumpled. Their souls released.
Ms. Crystobal held out her
hands. Energy in the shape of blue swirling light hovered over one
palm. Over the other hovered black droplets of something she
called, “The Ink Mass.”
She flung the light at a
group of Sleeper Devils. It scattered them to atoms.
She flung the Ink Mass at
another group. Those Sleeper Devils all tumbled backward like
ragdolls, spilling into a dimensional portal that opened up into
the heart of the Mojave Desert.
They blinked in surprise,
suddenly surrounded by a pack of hungry coyotes.
All the other Sleeper
Devils now swarmed around Wyn and Ms. Crystobal.
He fought them fast and
She decimated the rest with
a blast of violet energy.
She and he fought with all
the graceful movements of ballet dancers in
More Sleeper Devils poured
out of doors along the walls, more came down from hatchways in the
ceiling, and more crawled up from trapdoors in the floor. More came
in, and more came in after them, and more and more and more came in
Wyn thrust his way into the
It was full of monitors
displaying greenish images of the hallways and rooms and toilets.
Each image was filled with Lowen’s Sleeper Devils. Not one floor
was free of them – except the 120th, where Lowen was keeping the
It seemed as open and
spacious as the surface of the moon.
Wyn studied the computer
layout while Ms. Crystobal remained outside, turning Sleeper Devils
into motionless piles of bones and bile.
Wyn leaned over one
computer console and quickly hacked into the system and
reprogrammed the music to play Mozart’s
– “in honor of Aemilia,” he
said softly to himself.
Wyn quit the security
Fifteen Sleeper Devils were
standing outside the door waiting for him.
He turned them into pulp in
Easy as pi,” he said to
Meanwhile a chorus was
screaming through the loud speakers, “Dies irae, dies illa solvet
saeclum in favilla.”
It translates as:
Day of wrath, day of anger will dissolve the
world in ashes
Ms. Crystobal flung
seventeen Sleeper Devils through a portal toward the Draco Dwarf
She tossed twelve more
through a portal toward the bottom of the Mariana’s
She hurtled twenty-two more
through the nearest wall.
Just who exactly is Ms.
I must admit that she is
still a mystery to me, even though she and I have become much
closer than I’ve ever been with anyone, except for perhaps Theo,
and not to mention the Red Man.
A while back, when I was in
Idylville’s forest, spying on Joe and his family, Lowen and Ms.
Crystobal appeared. Behind them were doors. Above his had been the
Above hers had been the words:
Later, I asked Ms.
Crystobal what the doors meant.
She told me they were
Portals to where?” I
She told me that Lowen does
not have the power to open a portal to anywhere, “except death,”
portal I opened for you,” she added, “led to some
Peace,” she said, “I
Now in the Black Building,
the lobby was mostly empty.
Wyn and Ms. Crystobal had
completely decimated Lowen’s Sleeper Devils.
The only things still
moving were body parts – a few heads, some arms, some twitching,
The souls of those poor
Sleeper Devils released.
Be at peace,” Ms. Crystobal
whispered to them.
She opened a portal into
space and she blew their remains through it as if they were brown
She and Wyn went to the
elevator. He pressed the button. They waited.
How was the game?” she
I don’t watch sports,” he
New high score.”
Ms. Crystobal cleared her
Then she said: “Bet I can
The elevator doors
Ms. Crystobal rubbed her
hands together for a moment. She opened them.
Now over her palms was a
glowing speck of light, as small as a pinprick of