I am finishing up for December at 74,923 words. This puts me 77 words short of where I intended to be at the end of the month, and I can live with that.
Having the goal for the month led me to really push myself to write more this last week, and its been good for me. The monthly goals will continue.
And to show everyone just what I’ve been up to, here’s our intrepid main character dueling a vampire:
“The room was much cleaner than the first three, no scattered blood, no bodies. The bed had been made up neatly around the figure sleeping in it, and the closet had been cleaned out and a number of dry cleaning bags containing suits and what might have been black robes had been hung up in it.
I crossed to the bed and started to place the knife against the vampire’s throat when his eyes flicked open and he grabbed for the knife just as it touched his skin. Panicked, I tried to level the gun at him, but he swiftly knocked it out of my hand.
Quickly, I grabbed the knife with both hands and started forcing it towards him. With a snarl, he tried to punch me, only to allow the knife to slip forwards and gouge his half-dead flesh. He jerked sideways, half opening his throat and falling out of the bed.
He rolled to his feet and we faced each other across the bed. I held the knife, and he opened his mouth to shout for help.
To both of our surprise, all that emerged was a hoarse croak. I’d managed to sever his windpipe and vocal chords, rendering him unable to make any real noise. Where a human would have been spurting blood, however, he only oozed a thick brown liquid it took me a moment to realize was half-congealed blood. An injury that would have been quickly if not instantly fatal to many inhumans, let alone humans, was a mild inconvenience.
He snarled soundlessly at me and dove for the closet. I met him halfway there, trying to slash at his throat with the knife. He parried the blow and punched me in the stomach, sending me stumbling back a few paces as he reached the closet and produced what he was looking for: a sawed off pump action shotgun.
I didn’t even bother going for my gun – I didn’t have time. By the time he’d finished pumping the first round into the chamber, I was in his face, stabbing down into his right arm. Tendons snapped and bone cracked under the strike, and the pistol grip of the shotgun slipped from his nerveless fingers.
His other hand was still intact, though, and he used it to slam the gun broadside on into my face. I felt my nose break, and was shoved back a step. I blinked away stars, and then blinked again when I saw what he was doing.
The vampire’s left hand still held the shotgun by its pump, but the pistol grip was now lifting again – held in a living simulacrum of a hand, formed from the brown ooze of the vampire’s blood. I was fighting a blood mage.
For a moment, I was staring down the barrel of a shotgun, convinced I was going to die. Then fear and anger hit me, and I remembered fire. The same whip of flame I’d first conjured when fighting Lauren suddenly flashed into existence in my hand and I lashed out.
The whip wrapped around his left hand, and I pulled. Just as the gun was about to fire, I tore off the vampire’s functioning hand with a tendril of flame, and he opened his mouth in a hoarse, creepily quiet, scream of pain as the shotgun collapsed to the ground, his attention broken.
Taking advantage of his distraction, I wrapped the tendril around his neck. The vampire mage had enough time to realize what was about to happen and start to gesture his useless right hand at me to conjure some form of blood magic.
Then I burnt the fucker’s head off.”