Wednesday, April 30, 2014


Welcome to the last day of the A-to-Z challenge, today's word is Zealous and we will see a little part of Vampire Heart (unedited) Alexej is behaving a little strangely as if he likes better the company of the horses. Viorel wonders what is Zealous attitude toward the animals is about.

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It was getting dark outside already, we had eaten lunch inside and Alexej hadn’t taken a break all day. I wondered why he was so zealous. Was it because he really liked to travel and drive or was it because he needed to escape? I had the feeling somehow that there was something dark and mysterious about him and I knew that Irina had the same feeling. I opened the trap between us and the outside. Alexej was fixing the road in front of him, every single one of his moves were calculated. If I wasn’t afraid of Irina jumping out of the voiture even in the middle of driving, I would have liked to ask him to teach me his skills. I decided that I would the day after drinking from Irina, when she would be too weak to even open her eyes.
“Alexej, we need to stop for the night, can you find us a save inn to stay? Not of the kind we visited this morning,” I said.
Alexej looked at me and grinned. I could see on his face that he didn’t really like to be told what to do but he also knew that he had no real choice. I was the one paying for the trip and the food and he couldn’t possibly stop and go away without us in the middle of nowhere. I hadn’t notice a village for hours now.
“The next town is really close, they have an inn which takes care of horses and those two need rest”, Alexej said. “You know you sell them for the meat and get something else for the ride.”
“If they need rest, don’t push them too much, taking breaks during the day is also an option,” I said.
“Yes, sir,” Alexej answered looking back at the road as to close the conversation. I didn’t like his attitude and I liked my horses. I knew they were not common for a carriage but there was no way I was going to abandon them. I closed the trap and realized that I cared more about the horses than I had cared about humans, just like with Sorina’s rabbits. There was a part of me that I didn’t understand. My mum had told me about the value of human life so much but I was still not getting it.
“You like your horses,” Irina said.
For a second, I thought that she had just read my mind and it disturbed me. She was looking straight at me with her blue eyes partially hidden behind her straight blond hair, she needed rest and sleep, I could tell and a good meal and possibly a bath.
“I have a special relationship with the old one and and for the other I know it’s not common for carriage but...”
“It’s more and more common in the north, it’s cold there and they need horses with more fat on their muscle and deep skin and fur,” she interrupted me.
She looked back outside like lost in her thought. She must have loved the north deeply. That was the impression I had from her, she must have loved her life in the north deeply and fight to survive in the poor condition I had found her and now, she was contemplating the possibilities of getting back.
“Then I made a good choice when I bought it,” I said trying to be cheerful. “I really know nothing about horses, not that I don’t want to but generally they seem not to like me much, so I only took the one giving me a little bit of sympathy.”
“It’s a very stupid way of choosing horses,” Irina said always with the same tone of voice without even bothering looking at me.
Pretending silliness was not really the best way to get at her.
“Well, at least that’s a good way to built a relationship,” I said.
She deigned to look back at me.
“They fear you, that’s why you can’t get closer to horses, those two might be pretty courageous or pretty stupid. You are a predator, you feed on life and they can feel and smell it everywhere on you. For me the best horse is the one that stay the further away possible of people like you,” she said.
I smiled.
“Are you still considering me like a person?” I asked.
She bite her lips and looked away again found at fault. She was pretending to know better and she was pretending that I was only a beast, a monster or an animal but I knew she couldn’t go around of not looking at me and see me as just a man. I had the body and the face of a man. I had learned that it was a difficult thing for humans to go beyond what their eyes were showing them.
“I know what you are, that’s enough for me,” she said pushing the notebook of the priest toward me.
“Then I will need your help to understand it,” I answered. I wasn’t playing language game with her anymore, it was true, I needed to know what was in those notebook. “Are we going to cross the kingdom of Poland?” she asked.
“Yes, I want to spend few days maybe even weeks in Krakow to learn Russian and buy warm clothes to prepare for the cold north winter,” I said.
“Then I better start teaching you what’s in there as soon as possible because the kingdom as a privileged relationship with the Roman Catholic Church,” she said.
“I thought they were East and orthodox,” I said.
“Not anymore, Praha was safe for you because of the vestige of Jan Hus thought about religion, people there are poor, they don’t want to give their money to religion especially after hearing a priest saying that they don’t have too. The Catholic Church was not happy so they spend their time on more important things than a blood sucker like you, you were not the immediate threat for them and you could bite indiscriminately for or against them. The kingdom of Poland is different, I could bet that when we cross the border, you will become the first threat they will need to get rid of,” she said explaining to me about the religious politic of this part of Europe as if I was a child. 

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