Seated in the small confines of the church, the smells of old wood, both from the walls and the hard pew on which I was sat, permeated the air. The darkness was heavy, as the sun had not risen strong enough to push the dark clouds away and therefore we were missing the rainbows that normally danced around the tiny church from its coloured glass in the window frames.
The faint, sweet scent of roses assailed my senses. Someone had brought in flowers, pushing away the calming, old wood smell. My eyes welled more than before and I heaved a loud wet harrumph into my handkerchief; had to be roses! I was allergic. These thoughts all rolled in my mind, yet my eyes never left the tiny, white casket.
Little more than two feet long, it lay amongst a colourful array of silky blooms and tiny, shining jewels and baubles.
I hadn’t wanted her final farewell to be here, not in the church where her father and I had married. The memories of happier times burned my heart as surely as the sunlight would burn my child if she were to rise.
If only Steven had let his eyes wander that night. If only he had looked as the stripper disrobed. If only he hadn’t been loyal to me, he would have been checking out the bounty of her body like his mates at the stag party.
But no, he wasn’t interested in her body, and so instead kept his eyes averted from her sashaying hips and bouncing breasts, choosing instead to gaze upon her face. Her eyes caught and held his as her body continued to entice the horny lads surrounding her.
She chose him. She chose my Steve. Mesmerized by her eyes, he was lost too me. She took him, she drank from him and she changed him.
Even in his living death, all he wanted was his wife and his child.
Had I been at home when he came for us, I may now be among the living dead, but instead, the Nanny had found him with a very pale looking Jade held close to his bleeding heart, trying to make her sip the blood that he offered, barely 4 years old and he killed her.
The Nanny, upon seeing Jade and her old master; flew at him with a burning branch snatched from the fireplace. He’d screamed at her as he began to burn, dropping Jade upon the carpet.
I’d come home to find Jade, dead. The Nanny was blubbering hysterically about The Master, a vampire and pointing to a pile of ash. Hopes that my Steve would come back for me died, as I brushed the ashes into the firebox and then placed a silver cross around my darling Jade’s neck.
She would not rise with a cross to hold her. I would not have a monster take on my daughter’s appearance.
The funeral arrangements were swiftly made, I wanted the simple chapel down on 3rd street, but was over-ruled by other family members.
All that was left for me, was to listen to the minister as he prayed for her soul, a soul I knew had already departed via her father’s bite. And then to watch as her tiny coffin burned, once and for all placing my daughter to rest.
Tears burned my frozen cheeks as the casket descended into its final hell, the curtains closed as though on a stage with its final act. My baby scorched to ash, burned by flame but saved from brimstone. She was to be finally at peace.
I left to walk, lonely, broken hearted down the footpath. Giving only a fleeting glance to the children playing, until one little girl, no older than my darling Jade came and stood directly in front of me.
“Miss, don’t cry,” she said. “This is for you.”
She placed a shiny bauble in my palm and skipped away to play.
Blinking away tears, I glanced down at the glittery globe to find a tiny catch on its side. Inserting my thumbnail I flicked the metal clasp and the bauble sprang open. There, lying inside, glittering up at me was the same silver cross which I’d fixed around Jades neck.
Jade had somehow risen…..