“Stop.” Bathory effortlessly projects her voice to the vampires moving in to kill Mirsky and Wetzel. Mirth echoes in her voice. “Not them. Not yet.” She doesn’t acknowledge their grinning acquiescence but instead turns to look down at Schefflen. “Your ‘machines’, are they damaged? Can they continue?”

Her mad scientist pulls his head from the guts of a bank of dials close to the vat. He blinks owlishly up at her, clearly gathering his thoughts. His fingers never stop coiling around each other, stained worms. “Oh, yes, Mistress! They only took minimal damage, just  a few stray bullets. Easily repaired! And, with the readings that I took during the … ceremony…, I even have some ideas to increase their output.”

She waves him to silence, as he attempts to expound on his ideas. It would just be irritating babble. The important thing is that she can continue. She opens her mouth to give orders for the two men to be brought to her and something lands on her wrist. She hisses in pain as it burns her skin. A drop of something. Something hot that fell from the ceiling. She looks up.

Maccabbee melts through the floor. Continue reading “(Fangs of the SS) CHAPTER 30: Light vs. Dark”

London Streets
London Streets

The Pope, the House of Guise, and Philip of Spain still cherished their hostile intentions and looked only for an occasion to carry them into execution.

Mr. Secretary Walsingham

Conyers Read


Helmsley followed Denby down a narrow twisting alley. The buildings on either side, were they houses? Shops? He had no idea, they leaned over the alleyway and squeezed the night sky down to a wandering thread. He could hear the others behind him. With iron control, he tamped down any feelings of relief or triumph. He could ill afford either. The mission was not even close to finished. That would only come when they stepped ashore at Antwerp. Until then, he had to be at his most vigilant. Nick would never be more dangerous.

Denby came to the alley’s end and stopped to look out, peering each way. Helmsley realized that there was a huddled body laying in a pile of wood shavings against one side of the alley. He peered closer and saw that it was a person sleeping, not a person dead. Another one of London’s teeming masses. Only in his room at the inn had he been alone since arriving in London. All other places, there were people. Along with the feelings of relief, he also suppressed the itchy feeling of eyes on him. Continue reading “(Broken Instrument) CHAPTER 30: HELMSLEY: EVEN A BLIND HOG”


Von Regensberg takes aim and shoots a German soldier in the head.

This isn’t going well. The vampire pulls back fast behind the table on its side that’s his current cover. He’d gotten a glimpse of the tactical situation in the quick instant it had taken him to kill the Wehrmacht soldier. The Germans weren’t a serious threat, not against vampires, not even armed with those damnably effective weapons. Those living shooting statues. They were what was making this fight turn against him and his forces. Continue reading “(Fangs of the SS) CHAPTER 29: The Ceremony Begins”

information received

Poley and Moody are men of the same stamp: players in the secret theatre, provokers of sedition, pledgers of false vows.

The Reckoning

Charles Nicholl


Poley leaned back casually. He realized that there was a part of him that had been expecting this or something like this. He reached out, picked up his mug, took a leisurely sip, then put it back down. His mind completely bent towards the smiling man sitting across from him, as if everyone else in the tap room had ceased to exist for the moment. He’d felt the same in similar situations, events balancing on the knife edge, the utmost effort required for success. He kept his voice mild. “Why would you do something like that? You know well enough that I can have you up on a treason charge, Michael.”

Moody’s smile never even flickered. “I am a man of many talents, Bob. Many talents indeed, and I deserve to be compensated for each and every one of them. Them as compensate me the best are them that get the benefit of my talents.”

Poley’s sigh was unfeigned. “Blood of Christ, Michael. Coin and praise? That’s why you’re going to see your cods on a plate before they let you die screaming? During your time in the Tower you’ve seen it done; you know how bad a way to die that is.”

“And it’s not going to be my death.” Moody shrugged. “I know that my talents will keep me from the axe and block.” Continue reading “(Broken Instrument) CHAPTER 29: POLEY: A BROKEN INSTRUMENT”

nazi gasmask

His eyes start to glow. The light dribbling from his eye sockets pulses with the rhythm of his prayers.

He can’t stop her, him and his god. She knows that. But he can be a nuisance. She can’t afford any delays to her ceremony. She knows what she has to do. She doesn’t think about it. She doesn’t pause. She doesn’t do any human things like square her shoulders or take a deep breath. Continue reading “(Fangs of the SS) CHAPTER 28: The First Death Of Rabbi Judah Maccabbee”

woodcut woman murder01

Into her three score years and ten she continued to pack an impressive variety of activities, all of them lucrative and most of them unlawful.

The Elizabethan Underworld

Gamini Salgado


She was dressed in red. She always was. The color was a reminder to all who knew her, who knew of her. A reminder that if any poor fucker thought to take advantage just because she was a woman, the red would flow.

Nick needed no reminder. Those last moments years ago when he realized just who he’d given his heart to, those moments were seared into his soul. Even with all the nervy work that he’d been doing this past few years, pretending to be this, that, and t’other, the Inquisition just a word away, what woke him up screaming more often than not was the image of Meg’s cleaver flashing silver through the air and Meg’s blood-splattered face, the joyful blankness of her eyes. Continue reading “(Broken Instrument) CHAPTER 28: NICK AND MEG: PAST AND PRESENT”

Death mask by Furio Tedeschi
Death mask by Furio Tedeschi

The vampire’s fist breaks his nose off.

And that pisses him off. It’s not like he’s the handsomest golem, the Rabbi did his best but he’s a better occultist than sculptor, the handsomest is definitely Tipareth, but damn it, he’s going to be looking like the fucking Sphinx until he can find some glue or something. He hopes he doesn’t step on it. Continue reading “(Fangs of the SS) CHAPTER 27: Pieces Start To Fall”