Bryan Smith: Soultaker

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Bryan Smith Soultaker
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    Soultaker
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    Ужасы и Мистика / на английском языке
  • Язык:
    Английский
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Soultaker: краткое содержание, описание и аннотация

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Rockville, TN, seems like a normal small town. But in reality it-s become a nest of evil, the home of the Lamia, an ancient shape-shifting creature that survives by harvesting souls through seduction and manipulation. The Lamia has managed to enslave many of the young men in town, and many of the young women have become her priestesses.

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Bryan Smith


Soultaker

Copyright © 2009 by Bryan Smith

This one’s for my mom, Cherie M. Smith.

For everything you and Dad did for me through the years.

It has not been forgotten.


CHAPTER ONE

The boy and the girl eyed each other nervously as they stood in the clearing in the woods. The distant buzz of speedboats on the lake and the chirruping of crickets were like dim signals from another world, alien transmissions neither boy nor girl perceived. The whole of existence was comprised of their bodies and the aching space between them. Adolescent urges raged inside the boy, needs he could never quite articulate and only half understood.

All he knew was nothing in all of creation mattered more than this girl. He was horny, yes. Filled with lust, as any boy his age would be in his place. But it was more than that. He felt such great love for her, the kind of grand, pure love that was the stuff of fairy tales. She was a damsel, a radiant princess, and he was her shining knight. Thinking this made him feel silly, but he could at least be honest with himself-it was how he really felt.

Yet, he felt fear, too.

One thing he’d learned in his short time on the planet was that within love lay the potential for great hurt. He’d lost loved ones to death, drugs, and divorce, and he feared the hurt this girl could bring him if things went wrong, if he somehow failed to be everything she needed him to be.

Trey McAllister glanced heavenward and said, “Full moon to night.”

Myra Lewis shrugged. “So?” She took a drag from her clove cigarette and blew fragrant smoke Trey’s way. “You’re not superstitious, are you?”

Trey made a face and waved the smoke away. “Jesus Christ. Those cloves fucking stink.”

Myra smirked. “You don’t like it, you can find someone else to hang out with.” She blew another cloud of smoke his way. “Maybe one of those preppy chicks your buddies fuck. Or one of those Paris Hilton or Lindsay Lohan wannabes. Rockville High’s full of both.”

Trey frowned. “I don’t want one of those girls. You can’t talk to a girl like that. Not really talk, I mean. The way, uh, you and I talk.”

Myra rolled her eyes, but she ran a hand adorned with multiple silver pagan rings and black nail polish through her choppy jet-black hair, a self-conscious gesture. “Yeah. I’m special.”

Trey wrapped his arms around her and drew the girl’s small body close. “You are, you know. I’ve had other girlfriends, but they never meant much to me.” He smiled. “That was kid’s stuff. You’re the first girl I’ve ever wanted to have a real…relationship…with.”

Myra laughed. “You’re just saying shit you heard on Dr. Phil or something. You’re seventeen, Trey. You don’t have real relationships when you’re seventeen.”

“I’ll be eighteen next month.” He slipped a hand under the silky fabric of her blouse and shuddered at the feel of her bare flesh. “And my parents got married right after high school. We’re almost adults in the eyes of the law.”

They’d only been going together two weeks. She’d told him it was too soon to be fucking. But sometimes girls said things like that and didn’t really mean it, or only half meant it. Sometimes they were so hard to read, as complicated and hard to follow as one of the old novels you had to read for English class. But maybe she was beginning to relent. She seemed to melt against him. His arm moved higher, lifting her blouse as his fingers slipped under her bra. He leaned into her for a kiss. She cupped both sides of his peach-fuzzed face and matched his carnal hunger.

Trey pulled back and said, “I want you.”

Myra was breathing hard. She stepped out of his embrace and tugged her blouse down. The gesture was instinct, Trey thought, maybe some remainder of her mother’s attempts to make her believe in the virtues of teenage chastity. He gripped her wrist and drew her back into his arms. She did not resist. His tongue probed her open mouth, making her moan. She cupped the bulge at the crotch of his jeans and gave him a squeeze. The way he reacted-with a squirm and a husky grunt-obviously pleased her. It made her feel powerful, like she could make him do whatever she wanted with just the right touch.

Trey managed to say, “Are we…are we…”

Myra gripped a handful of hair at the back of his head. “Yes.”

This brought a trembling smile to his lips. “I don’t have a condom.”

Myra unsnapped his jeans. “And I don’t care.”

“But-”

Myra reached inside his jeans and said, “Shut the fuck up. You can pull out.”

“But-”

Myra gave him a squeeze. “I told you to shut up.” Then she released him and tugged her blouse off over her head. The blouse fell to the ground. “Your turn.”

“Wha-what?”

She laughed. “Take something off.”

Trey Marshall was eager to do as she commanded. He’d dreamed of this very thing for months, from the moment he’d laid eyes on the strangely alluring new girl at the beginning of the school year. He’d still been dating Hannah Crawford, his girlfriend since Christmas break of the previous year, but the blonde and busty preppy girl soon seemed so ordinary to him, a bland and uninteresting bubblehead compared to this exotic creature. For months he’d worked up his courage, then, finally, he dumped Hannah and asked Myra out.

He’d expected to get shot down. He was a good-looking guy. One of the popular kids at school. The opposite, he’d been certain, of anything that would interest Myra Lewis. So he’d been surprised when she’d accepted his offer of a date. That first date was a real eye-opener, too. She took him to an all-ages punk show at a downtown club, where they saw a band called The Cramps. This was a seriously weird, loud band with a freaky-looking lead singer and a hot chick guitarist in high heels and a tiny dress. He’d felt so self-conscious in his Joe Straight clothes. Everyone else at the club was decked out in punk or goth gear. But Myra, who of course did look as if she belonged, clung to him throughout the evening, making him feel like he belonged, too. Just two weeks had passed, but his whole life seemed different now. He didn’t just love her, he idolized her. He burned copies of her favorite albums and listened to them incessantly. He memorized titles of books from her library and ordered his own copies from Amazon.com. They went to more shows. Always the same kind of thing. The Voluptuous Horror of Karen Black. The Genitorturers. His friends joked about his obsession with the “weirdo” and called him “whipped,” but he just didn’t give a shit what they thought anymore.

Myra.

Fuck. She was everything to him.

His hands shook as he began to remove his shirt. God, how he loved the way the brilliant moonlight sparkled in Myra’s eyes. She was so beautiful, like some kind of gothic angel. He was so enraptured the approaching noise took longer to register. He paused with the shirt bunched up around his shoulders, squinting at the dark line of trees beyond Myra.

She frowned. “What’s wrong?”

Trey tugged his shirt back down and stepped past her. “Someone’s coming.” He stared at the black line of trees, straining to see what was out there. Then he saw a flicker of light, a burning flame moving at shoulder level. Then more flickers, like a line of approaching torchbearers. The flickering lights grew brighter and he began to hear the crunch of twigs beneath multiple pairs of feet. And he began to perceive another sound; a soft, rising murmur, a chantlike cadence drifting closer on the gentle evening breeze. He took an unconscious step back and gripped Myra by the wrist again. “Come on.”

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