Disclaimer: I do not own Saiyuki or anything else that anybody in the known universe could sue me for. I own nothing.
AN: It's been a while. But at long last I think I have an idea of where I want this story to go. So hopefully it'll also run just a little bit smoother that before. Also, there were some reviews about the differences between succubus/vamps, which apparently I'm totally mucking up. But a) I call them vampires for the most part anyway. b) The succubus of myth didn't feed on someone's soul but their life energy. Seeing as how life isn't worth living without blood, I figured I could get away with the difference.
Goku didn't hear a scream. Or a cry. Or even the crunch of the vampire's fangs sinking into Gojyo's throat. At least not in a physical sense. He simply woke up with a very sick feeling in his stomach. He hadn't slept that well to begin with, after that look Nahema's kid sister gave Sanzo. It didn't take him more than a minute to slip on his day clothes.
Slowly he crept from his room, he'd picked the one just across the hall from Sanzo, like he always did. Crouching by the door, he heard voices hushed by the barrier. Slowly to prevent anyone being alerted to his presence, he opened the door. Sometimes, as much as he loved to go blundering in there, he knew that the element of surprise could be valuable. He peeked his golden eyes through the tiny crack he'd opened.
Goku saw Sanzo, and Nahema. She was crouching on the windowsill, catlike, and gorgeous in that same way. He swallowed the rising thought of how pretty she was...
Sanzo had the gun lowered at her, Goku bit his lip. At first, he hadn't felt so bad about this whole vampire idea, but ever since Trivania showed her teeth he couldn't get it out of his mind. Then a colder thought came to him, Sanzo wouldn't do anything stupid.
But Gojyo might...
Not bothering to shut the door, he slinked his way down the hall to where Gojyo had made his room. He actually missed a couple of times because he couldn't exactly remember which room was Gojyo's. By the time he did, he wished he hadn't. The sight he saw was one he could have gone his whole life without.
The blond vampire's clothes must have been discarded a long time ago. Goku saw the curves of her body in the moonlight filing in through the open window. She was laying on top of Gojyo, whose clothes also seemed to have miraculously vanished. Gojyo laid there, crimson hair sprawled out on the pillow like some kind of demented halo, his muscular chest unmoving. Trivania suddenly arched her back, tossing her golden hair. With her mouth open Goku could easily see the jagged points of her teeth, and the thick, dark liquid dripping from them.
She suddenly jerked her head in his direction. Goku just stood there in stunned silence. It was only when Trivania flung herself from the bed and landed on him with her wiry body that his mind kicked back into real time. And he realized that Gojyo was in serious trouble and he had a vampire trying to bite his throat out. He had managed to get a hand right on her throat; another desperately holding her scratching arms back. He managed to hold one back, but the other hand made terrible scratches on the right side of his face. In one fortunate moment, he managed to get a leg between his body and her stomach. Tearing her away from him. Maybe in his stunned state he used a little more force than he should have. He flung the vampire across the room. Amazingly she twisted and landed elegantly on her feet. She shot him a short, arrogant smile, "You can't defeat me now boy. This close to feeding. I am far too strong for you."
With a jerk of his hand, his staff instantly materializing into his hand. Whether or not he could defeat her, he at least had to stop her. She'd taken a lot of blood from Gojyo, just by looking at him he could see that the half-breed wasn't breathing. Sanzo and Hakkai could take care of themselves; right now he knew his priority was to get his other friend to safety. "Whatever you say! But I'm still gonna take you down!"
"Mmm." She licked the residue of blood from her lips, "Courageous. Loyal. I shall enjoy feeding on you. As an appetizer to the priest of-"
Goku didn't give her time to finish her 'evil villain speech' instead he moved with speed fueled by need. And swung his staff at her jaw like it was a Louisville Slugger. She craned her neck backwards at the last second to avoid it; even so he felt the satisfying crack of the staff against her cheek. It was enough force to fling her to the side. Stunning her enough that she couldn't gather her wits in time to land on her feet. Instead flying straight into the wall with a dull crack of bone and flesh. She seemed still as she lay there, but in the space between his panicked heartbeats Goku knew she wouldn't be down long. Goku moved quickly, grabbing Gojyo (after taking a moment to wrap him in his sheet) up into a fireman's carry then jumping out the window onto the ground below.
Now, he hadn't necessarily looked before leaping like Sanzo always taught him. Time once again dropped into slow motion as he glided downward into the crowd of hungry vampires beneath his feet.
Sanzo flew from his position on the floor, much to the complaint of his leg. In his frenzy he ignored the vampire on the bed entirely. Almost the second he staggered out of his room a wave of malicious intent slammed into him. But he felt it too late, not even having enough time to bring his gun to level with the monster charging him before the thing knocked him to the ground with unforeseen strength. Sanzo hit the ground in an uncontrolled roll; the vampire dove for his throat. The priest barely had time to think, all he could do was thrust up his gun arm between the vampire's gaping jaws and his neck. Forced to ignore the fire burning in his arm upon contact with the dagger-like fangs, he dropped his gun into his left hand, and blew the vamp away.
"Shit." He grunted as he examined the wound. Those fangs had bitten right through his glove.
Suddenly, an inhuman shriek came from behind him. Sanzo slammed his back onto the floor just as a second vampire flew over his head. She twisted in midair to land on all fours, then hissed at him, exposing her long fangs. He shot her behind the shoulder. The female vampire fell to the ground, writhing but not dead. Never being one to waste a bullet, Sanzo grabbed the stake he'd made earlier, then using all the strength he could muster, drove it deep into the vampire's chest.
Nothing so great happened as turning to dust, or goo, or go into violent spasms. She just stopped moving. Sanzo supposed it was just as well, if something cool like that had happened he might have been persuaded to stay and watch. As it were he could hear calls and hisses from both ends of the hallway. It hit him that Nahema was probably the most dangerous vampire of them all. If what she said was true and she was the queen, than that meant she was the oldest, probably the strongest. Now that he thought about it her appearance was more human than the other vampires. Her fangs weren't as defined as others in the village, and the other vampires hadn't made him feel anywhere near the way Nahema did.
Sanzo spun back into his room to finish her, or at least use her as a hostage. Naturally the vampire was nowhere to be seen. He was about to turn around when a sudden pressure clasped his shoulder.
His heart skipped a beat and he found himself pointing his gun at Hakkai.
"Damn it Hakkai!" He snarled.
"I'm sorry. I didn't mean to startle you."
Hakkai nodded, "Right."
Suddenly, Hakkai dropped and rose, bringing an elbow into a vampire's stomach. In perfect use of his more elegant fighting style he pivoted on his left foot and sent a perfectly measured blast of chi in her direction. She collapsed in a charred pile of dust.
"Woah," Hakkai said, "I guess Chi-Gong is nearly as effective as sunlight."
"Guess later. Walk now." Sanzo had already jerked the full of his robe on again and used a ripped bed sheet to bandage his wounded arm. "So, do you have any idea where Goku is?"
"I don't know. I went to his room but he wasn't there."
Sanzo nodded, he wasn't too concerned about Goku. As gullible as the kid was he could handle his own weight, "Right. And the dickhead?--Duck."
Hakkai ducked, giving Sanzo ample time to make a nice hole in the head of the vampire coming from behind. Hakkai stood up, and delivered a swift roundhouse kick at another vampire, snapping the neck in the most stylish of ways. "If by 'dickhead' you mean Gojyo then I don't know either. I went to his room but there was blood on the sheets. No sign of Gojyo."
"Blood. Enough to kill?"
"No, but there's no telling how much that vampire drank." They were running out into the hall by now. As Hakkai stepped out he illuminated their way with a royal blue glow. There was a flurry of inhuman shrieks as the light touched the creatures hiding in the shadows. "My turn for questions: Why did this happen? Why are they attacking us now?"
Sanzo shrugged as he reloaded, "Far as I can tell we were under Nahema's protection. But if any of us accepted the company of a vampire we would wave any right to it."
Hakkai pieced the rest together, "Ah, so when Gojyo slept with one of them..."
"He screwed the rest of us over, yes. Why do we have to have so many reruns of the 'Stupid Kappa Causes a Giant Cluster-Disaster That the Rest of Us Have to Deal With Show'?"
Hakkai didn't reward that with a response.
They were making their way towards the staircase now, Hakkai holding a ball of chi. As it turned out the light from it seemed to bother vampires, and if they got a direct dosing of energy then it was just as good as the sunlight myth. So naturally Hakkai took point, while Sanzo watched their six by firing a never ending stream of bullets. He managed to kill or wound several vampires who got over their fear of the rain of lead and tried to attack. Meanwhile Hakkai took care of the majority of their frontal attackers. When they reached the stairs things got considerably more difficult. Sanzo was forced to watch both where he was stepping and he had to use his left hand to shoot, because his right hand had become so overwhelmed with pain he didn't think he could hold it straight anymore. But worst of all was the pain coming from his right leg, where the cloth from his robes was brushing against the burn with every movement. It hurt like hell. If he recalled, Dante's version of Hell included fire and the burns to go along with it. So that statement was actually quite literal.
He took only a heartbeat to marvel at where his mind could wander in the midst of a quite possibly life threatening situation. Without warning a vampire threw herself onto the staircase, Sanzo didn't think, just smacked her with his gun (a very handy blunt weapon as well as projectile). Wet, thick blood poured from her cut cheek. Sanzo bent down and lifted her up and over the side of the staircase, then got right back to work reloading.
As he looked down into the entrance hall, he almost got a rush of terror at the sight of maybe fifty vampires crammed into that little space. Practically falling over each other to get up the staircase. They were in the middle of a feeding frenzy. And where the hell was Goku?
"Hakkai!" He was now standing back to back with the healer.
"Sanzo..." Hakkai panted, "I can't...keep this up."
"Okay..." He pondered it, if Hakkai couldn't last much longer, and he would run out of bullets eventually; then there was only one option they had. "I'm going to use the scripture, be careful. I'll will it away from you as much as I can, but if it touches you there won't be much I can do."
Hakkai didn't respond, just pressed closer to Sanzo. He would be safer close to the monk than farther away.
The priest closed his eyes, tapping into the scripture's great power through a nearly inaudible chant. Power over darkness, the power to banish evil, to pull it into the abyss; that was what the scripture's purpose was. To keep the darkness in check on earth. As he tapped into it, he could feel the way the power was used before him. First to forge heaven and Shang-Gri La then as it was passed down from the hands of one Sanzo priest to another. It was that ancient, beautiful power he tapped into, and he knew it was a great honor to do so. This power thrummed through his body, resonating through his chest and making his bones rattle in place. After a second that felt like eternity he opened his eyes and howled the battle cry: "Makai Tenjo!"
The scripture exploded in a brilliant light, as brilliant as the sun and life itself. The power that had filled his body spilled out in the form of deadly paper tendrils. He was the catalyst of the scripture's energy. That was why people who weren't Sanzo priests couldn't use it; people viewed the scriptures as something that could be used. When in reality they couldn't be more wrong. The scriptures flowed through their bearers and gave them extra energy, the Sanzo priest had to know how to reach that hidden strength, and know that it came with a price. Said price being that you could very easily kill yourself by draining too much of your own energy after you finished with the scripture's, as with Hakkai's chi-gong. Sanzos had to be strong both physically and mentally to use their scriptures often.
The light stunned the vampires, forcing them to cower in shock and fear. Which was closely followed by the scripture itself, turning them to dust. It was as he stood in this light, the intimate moment where he was connected to his scripture, that he realized that all the vampires turning to dust were female. Nahema. Blondie. That woman standing guard outside the entrance to the dark city. All female...
Now, what that could possibly mean Sanzo had no idea, but it had to mean something. A wave of dizziness overcame him, and he knew he was close to through with the scripture's leant power. If he went any farther he would begin to tap into his own reserves of life energy. Too much of that and there would be nothing to keep his heart beating.
More vampires turned to dust; still he maintained the steady flow of energy towards destroying the vampires. At the same time he struggled to keep it away from Hakkai. For it was far easier to direct the force at something than keep it away.
He heard the voice, but it was more like an echo as he very quickly drifted away. Sanzo had never used the scripture this long before, and it was taking it's toll.
Hakkai would have to tell Sanzo to quit smoking if he intended to ever use the scripture like this again. As he watched his friend continually get paler in the glow he pondered on what to do. Leaving the virtual shadow of his friend would risk getting killed by the scripture. "Sanzo!" He called, getting no response.
"Sanzo! You've got to stop! It'll kill you!"
Damnit. Hakkai had to think of something. Fortunately for Sanzo, this was not a difficult task for Hakkai.
Gathering what remained of his energy in his fist, he reached up into the barrage of cloth and paper. It worked just as he had hoped. The small force field of chi energy allowed the scriptures to bounce off his hand and leave him unharmed. The demon brought his fist up, and clipped Sanzo crisply on the jaw.
Sanzo dropped to the ground in a heap, the light immediately ceasing and the scripture shrinking back to normal size.
Both men lay on the staircase, panting, dust all around them. "Well," Hakkai said as he brushed off his green tunic, "At least that wasn't hard or anything..."
"Tell me...about it..." Sanzo said between heavy, labored breaths.
"You should really quit smoking..."
Hakkai was the first to shove himself to his feet. "Common, we aren't safe here. We've got to get to that cellar. From there we can device a new strategy."
Sanzo nodded, swallowed, and struggled to his feet, swaying a little. Hakkai reached out a hand to steady him for fear he'd survive the vampire assault just to go tumbling down the stairs.
VVVVV Chapter End
AN: Okay, no real author note, except: please review.