I own two vampires now, along with everyone killed in this little piece.

Little Red Riding Hood

All the stories mentioned treasure beyond anyone's wildest dreams, but none of the stories mentioned anything about rotting corpses outside of coffins.

Two bodies laid crumpled on the stone floor like wilted flowers. Both male, the bodies looked as though they were carelessly tossed aside. And God! The smell! Nothing was as horrid as the smell of decaying human flesh. How long they had been there was anyone's guess, but they couldn't be more than a few weeks old.

As unfortunate as the demise of the two individuals was, nothing would stop her from acquiring more wealth then she could ever spend in this life. All the tales spoke of a necklace that contained a gem whose historical value alone was the equivalent of entire countries. It had seen more blood than all the civil wars the world has seen, and the last known holder of the jewel was laid to rest in this crypt. The gem was inside one the sarcophagi. Now…which one?

The first few sarcophagi contained nothing more than dried out skin and bones so old the little bit of remaining cloth covering them was rotted and would unravel at the touch. The next contained a grizzly scene. Inside the marble was a body that seemed to be only a few days old. It was male with long, red hair. Strange. Why would there be so fresh a body in the crypt when there were two dead and rotting bodies outside of a tomb? Had this fresh one been laid to rest with all the proper care, the bodies of those two would not be just left there. Still, she didn't bother to search the body in the sarcophagus; the holder of the gem had been a woman.

The next one she checked contained a body as well, but this male had black hair to his chin. He, too, was ignored, but she could not shake that strange feeling that something was wrong there. Both bodies were too fresh. They both were young men. They should not have died.

Systematically, she worked her way though all the crypt, not bothering with the vaults on the walls; someone possessing the gem would be buried in a place of honor. Finally, there was only one left.

A feeling of triumph was building inside of her. In mere moments, she would hold the key to glory in her hands. Then, her triumph transformed to horror. In the coffin was not a skeleton like she had expected, but a fresh body once more. But this one was a woman with long hair of a red-brown and skin as white as the marble she laid in. A black shroud was wrapped around her, and not much else. The corpse was gaunt, and there seemed to be bruising under her eyes, but how could she have stayed so pure? How could three bodies stay so intact? It was too strange to be coincidence.

But that mystery would wait another day. Resting on the woman's bosom was the very gem she sought. A grin overtook all her features. It was within her reach… Just as she took it in hand, the dead woman's arm blurred and a scream left her lips as a hand crowned with glassy-nails grapped her wrist. The woman's eyes were open and shown green and red. The two-colored eyes focused on her and red lips parted to show not teeth but fangs.

She never left the tomb, and there the treasure stayed for another foolish seeker to come for. The three would eat well for years to come.