Author's Note: Just so no one thinks there's a plot hole, I've determined that Seras gives off a certain amount of body heat. Not as much as a human, but she does show up on things like thermal goggles.
A week long heat wave held London in its grasp. Seras Victoria didn't sweat, but she felt the heat all the same as she stood outside of a shabby apartment building in a rundown section of town.
A Hellsing armored personnel carrier was parked conspicuously in the middle of the street. Traffic had been blocked at either end and Hellsing was relying solely on the darkness and the fact that no one went through the slums at night to conceal their work.
Seras loaded a clip into her large rifle. A normal soldier would have had to fire it from a tri-pod, but it had been modified specially for her to shoot like a normal weapon. All the members of the attack squad were looking at her, waiting for her to take the lead.
She was sure they were looking at her figure, but that didn't matter. She had been on enough missions with the to know they were all good people and had come to trust them as she had her former colleagues in the police department.
"Right behind you, Victoria," the squad leader said. He was a young, serious man who Seras thought would rise quickly through the ranks if he didn't get killed first.
She ran up the building's cracked concrete steps to the door and kicked it down. Expecting at least a few ghouls to be near the entrance, she was surprised to find there were none. She held up her left arm and made a fist, signaling for the team behind her to wait.
The hallway that led around a corner smelled like urine and cigarette smoke. The stench of blood overlaid it, meaning they were in the right place. She went down the hall with her rifle ready. She could slaughter ghouls with her bare hands if need be, but it was messy work.
Making her way down to the end of the hall, she could smell more blood from the stairwell. Glancing behind her, she saw the rest of the squad coming up from behind, their weapons trained on the doors she had gone past.
Signaling that she was going up to the second floor, she opened the door and went into the stairwell. The worn out tile of the floor was soaked in blood, as were the old, bent wooden planks that made up the steps. Looking up, she could see where the blood had come from. Hanging from the ceiling were four naked bodies. Men from the look of it.
Going up the stairs, she saw that their nude forms were slick with blood and their heads were missing.
"What in the…" she said. The normal modus operandi for vampires was to kill as many people as they could, and make them into ghoul slaves. Cutting off the head made their pseudo-resurrection impossible.
Standard procedure was to check each floor, but her instinct was telling her to go up to the top. Not one to argue instinct, she ran up the stairs and entered the fifth floor where it seemed that much of the carnage had taken place.
It was clear no one really lived in the apartment building. It was nothing more than a dodgy place for drug dealers and junkies. The corpses scattered about, some without heads, were all of young men. Rough types from the look of it.
Stepping past the bodies, she walked over to a door that was open slightly. Tipping it open with her gun barrel, she stepped in front of the threshold, ready to fire. There was nothing to fire at. No ghouls, no vampires, nothing but the headless corpse of a black man sitting at the kitchen table near an open window.
Walking up to the window, she peered out. It was a long drop to the parking lot bellow. She saw what might be blood near a white van, but couldn't be sure. It was possible the vampire had gone up to the roof and while leaning out to look at how much of a job such a climb would be, she heard something move in the kitchen.
Realizing she'd been tricked, she pulled back but wasn't fast enough. Something strong and large hit her, sending her tumbling over the edge of the window sill. For two seconds Seras experienced the sensation of free fall and just as she realized how much the impact was going to hurt, she hit the pavement.
She landed on her back, tilting to the left slightly so her arm absorbed much of the impact. Her head struck the concrete, causing her to see a white flash followed by darkness.
She came to quickly, feeling that her arm was broken and she had cracked several ribs. Looking around for her rifle, she saw something drop from the fifth floor and land in a puddle of fluid near a dumpster.
There was an electric shimmer where the thing had splashed in the puddle. It traveled up, briefly revealing the shape of legs and a humanoid torso. Watching it, she saw it come towards her, barely visible. It reminded her of the heat lines coming up off a stretch of highway or over a stove.
Wincing in pain, she maneuvered herself into a crouch and pretended to be too hurt to move. She didn't know what sort of vampire could become invisible and cut the heads off human corpses, but she would have plenty of time to ask once she beat it half to death.
She heard what sounded like a sword being unsheathed and realized too late it had a weapon. Something cold and hard pierced her through the chest, knocking her into her back. Coughing up blood, she looked down to see what was protruding from between her breasts. Her blood made the nearly invisible object crackle, and she saw that it was some sort of steel spear.
The thing holding it twisted the spear, ripping arteries and muscles. She choked out a scream and grabbed the weapon, pulling on it as hard as she could.
Her efforts took the spear from the thing's grip, and she heard it growl. It was a pebbly sound, like something from a cat or a Hollywood lizard. There was another metallic sound, telling her it had drawn another weapon.
Ignoring the pain, she stood up, holding the spear up off the ground and tugged on it, hard. It tore out of her, sending blinding waves of pain through her chest and arms. With the spear out, she backed up, concentrating on the thing she could barely see.
Able to hear its footsteps, she knew it had become cautious. Armed with its spear, coated in her blood, she was vaguely aware of the attack squad calling out in the halls above, unaware of what was transpiring in back lot bellow.
It moved to her left and she stabbed at it, missing. Suddenly, she couldn't hear it and her eyes couldn't pick up its location. Something sharp and painful struck her in the right shoulder. She looked to see a metal throwing star sticking out of her arm. Gritting her teeth, she wiped a glut of blood from her chest up in her fingers and flicked it in front of her.
The effect was immediate. When her blood struck the creature, it shimmered. Able to make out its outline, she rushed forward, stabbing with the spear. It tried to sidestep her, but wasn't quick enough. The spear caught it in the upper thigh, grazing it. It growled, and Seras was distracted for a moment by the bright green blood on the end of the spear.
A red light appeared where the creature's shoulder was, making her realize its height. It was at least seven feet tall, making her wonder just what it could be before there was a bright flash from the red light, and a searing pain in her left shoulder.
She dropped the spear and suddenly felt like she had gained one-hundred kilos. Looking down on the ground, her mouth gaped when she saw her left arm lying on the ground, clutching the strange vampire's weapon.
"You…" she said, as gunfire from above rained down on the lot, sending chips of concrete flying up.
Slightly more visible than it was before, she saw it dart forward, grab her arm, along with the spear, and run off into a narrow alley between the apartment building and a wooden fence. She took two steps forward and collapsed to her knees, weakened. "My arm," she said. "Come back with my arm."
Feeling her stomach turn, she hung her head and waited for the feeling to pass. She could now hear Hellsing soldiers shouting, and didn't look up until the apartment's door to the back lot opened.
To be continued…