Bring on the Night (A Jake Savage Adventure)

Bring on the Night is a sequel of sorts to the short story ChivalryBring on the Night Front Cover copy

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A Medieval Tale of Vampires, Bring on the Night is the sequel to the bestselling Chivalry (A Jake Savage Adventure)

In the shadows of the dark forest death awaits the unwary. For Jake and his fellow fugitives, there is more to be afraid of than wolves and outlaws. There are Vampires.

It is 1374 and Jake Savage, previously an archer in the English army, is running away from his past. But in the dark woods that past is about to catch up with him. The young boy he saved from murder at the hands of his former comrades has found him and now he must make the ultimate decision – to die a horrific death or live on as one of the undead.

And here’s a brief extract from the start of the story:

Jake wished he could ignore the campfire, but whenever he turned over to sleep it was there, glowing like the sun through the skin of his tired eyes. Like sun glinting on armour and swords, and skin burning red as if covered with the blood of men-at-arms and archers. If there were no light then maybe he would sleep?

But then there were the sounds. The low murmur and occasional chuckle of Simon and Alfonso, who kept watch warming their hands over the fire. He knew that they did their best to be quiet, to let their fellows rest until it was their turn to watch, but their hushed voices chewed at his sleep like rats. Yet if they didn’t watch then they might all die. There were beasts in the forest: bears and wolves, and other men as bad as themselves.

And if Simon and Alfonso had been quiet then there was the ground. It was not wet (it was as dry as Christ’s bones), but there were stones beneath the thin grass that pushed through his jerkin into his fleshless ribs. A pain of hunger twisted his stomach as images of meat and bones flashed through his head. The outlaws’ rations had been the thinnest pottage for the past few days.

Then there was a time of peace and he forgot his memories, the fire, the voices, the ground and his hunger.

He must have slept through the beginning of it.

His eyes snapped open. It was dark. The campfire had gone out. He heard shuffling sounds, something moving in the bracken between the trees. ‘Simon, Alfonso,’ he whispered, for some unknown reason not daring to raise his voice.

His own quiet words sounded like a breath of wind in the night air. And then there was a pause, and then came a roar of violence that surged all around him. He heard the sound of flesh being ripped and torn, bones broken as if some great weapon had assaulted them. As he rose to his feet and reached for his sword he could not see any weapon of war, a trebuchet or crossbow or cannon, only dark shapes moving through their campsite as fast as bats but with the size of men.

A ripping sound came from his right and he felt warm wet blood land on his face, and a stifled scream that turned into a gurgling whimper. He ducked his head to avoid the torrent of blood. Perhaps he could hide, or run away and find a tree to hide behind? He looked behind him and stumbled towards the silhouette of a large tree trunk. He thought of shouting again, to gather his fellows to him, to find out if any still lived, but he dared not risk whatever attacked knowing where he was.

His escape was in vain. Fingers as strong as bear claws grabbed his shoulders and brought him to the ground in one movement. His sword was knocked from his hand and he was pushed onto his side his head forced forward and then he could feel hot breath and the cold hard touch of sharp teeth on his neck.

The teeth on his neck pierced the skin and he tensed himself, unable to move his body, yet trying to retract his innards, the vessels that carried his blood, his flesh, his very bones away from whatever beast held him fast. The insertion of the teeth did not hurt, and a sense of relief passed over him, and yet still fear of what was to come. And then it came, sucking the flesh of his neck and shoulder through what felt like a burning hot hole in neck. He felt as if his whole body was being drawn through, as if a hook and skewer had been stuck under his skin and was wrenching the flesh from his bones and out into that beast’s maw.

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