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When Bats Sleep (Published May 2007, Copyright Aug. 2006)
Chapter 1

The car pulled into the foggy cemetery driveway at four-thirty in the morning. The gate was locked, but the young man parked anyway as no one would be around until at least seven. He and her liked to come here, the familiar place and familiar memories here comforted them; a stable, unchanging place in an unpredictable and disappointing world.

The moonlight was enough as it brightened and dimmed in the passing fog, so he turned off the lights that briefly illuminated the marble crypts of the mausoleum and they both got out. She pulled on her black leather jacket, and he put on his black trench coat as they walked to the side of the gate driveway to the pedestrian entrance; the black wrought iron gateway arch was always open. Vines had grown over the years, intertwined with the wrought iron bars and the leaves gone in the November fall season.

As the couple stepped softly on the sidewalk towards the moonlit mausoleum, a fleeting, flashing black against the gray fog above the great structure caught her attention: a bat, artfully twisting and turning after the moths that had been disturbed by their car headlamps. Their night time visit meant death for the moths and life for the bats. The plus and minus canceled out any guilt she felt for triggering the ancient struggle for existence.

He put his arms around her small waist as they reached the foot of the steps, and facing her, looked at her eyes. Even now, her eyes reflected color, but now they were deep and dark, her lips pale pastel lavender. On her fair face in the moonlight, they made her into an image of love that shone with a cold light, a goddess fit for the cemetery, a goddess that would make a man welcome death.

She put her arms inside his trench coat, and looked into his eyes, but his back was to the moonlight. Only darkness could be seen in his face, but she could feel the affection, his worship of her. His face came closer, his nose rubbing hers in a deliberate and prolonged search for her lips. He kissed her, breathing in her scent, feeling the cold fog as he inhaled. She was breathing in too, taking in his smell and the smell of the leaves decaying in the soil, the cold moisture in the fog, a thousand sensations at once. Her senses were overloaded trying to listen and speak at the same time in this elementary communication between man and woman.

He pulled her closer, wanting to devour her if he could. Breaking off the kiss, he kissed her cheek then bit her neck where it met her shoulders, she gasped at the sensation. Looking up she saw that the bat was flying towards the mausoleum under the great roof, and hung itself upside down, claws grasping a chipped edge inside. It stared back at her with eyes faintly reflecting twin dots of green.

Here they were safe from the world of the living. The cemetery was the only place where there were people with no problems. Sanctuary.

The night time sky was beginning to glow: sunrise was coming. Time for bats to sleep.
Another foggy, cold night at the cemetery, the fog hugging close to the ground with inky blackness above. But tonight...Tonight was Valentine’s Day night.

A dark green Cadillac pulled into the familiar black gated driveway. He had taken her out to dinner and now, at ten o’clock, they had come to their favorite and secluded sanctuary. The car lights shutting off, the car doors opened. He got out, wearing his black trench coat against the cold, her shining black leather jacket with her collar turned up against the moisture. This night, they held hands as they slowly walked the familiar walkway under the black iron and vine entwined archway entrance to the home of No Problems.

The fog was thick tonight, obscuring the mausoleum, but its roof could be seen above the low thick layer of gray. The bats were circling in their radar predation above the large marble and stone structure, but at ground level she could not see anything until they were within a few feet of it. As they walked closer to the crypts, tombstones came into view out of the mist: some with crosses, others had the Star of David.

He squeezed her hand, so she looked at him, to see him pointing silently. She followed his direction: two large tombstones in the distance midway between them and the mausoleum, their graves hidden by the mist, but the tops appearing above it. But in front of the grave markers, a softly glowing green haze that became twin oblongs of light.

The twin drifting lights elongated, and became humanoid. She was spellbound. He stared. An arm from each light reached out, and the two forms held hands. The forms became a glowing green man and woman, in turn of the century dress: her dress large and ruffled, hair in locks that draped from her flowered hat, he in a tuxedo and top hat. They appeared to be the same age as the living couple, and just as in love as revealed by their gazes towards each other.

The ghostly couple still facing each other, his arm around her waist and the other holding her hand high, her other hand holding a fan against his shoulder, they began to dance. They did not seem to notice the living.

As the misty fog drifted over the graves, the green glow brightened and dimmed, but the couple still danced, a slow waltz, now slowly spinning together as they started to rise above the fog.

The living man put his arm around his living female companion, and she cuddled against him, holding her jacket collar close against the mist, watching with large, deep dark eyes. The ghostly couple, dead for over a century, were now above the mausoleum circling each other, the bats flying through their green haze, spiraling higher, spinning, smiling, eyes locked in an eternal gaze. They rose high in the sky, perspective shrinking them until they were a bright green star that twinkled, and then went out.

The living couple walked up to the tombstones. Beloved husband and wife ‘till death do us part’. He smiled at her, and she smiled back at him. Death obviously failed.
Hints of vampirism. Is that what the book is about? Where was it published?
Charming story, very atmospheric. Smile
Hi, I love the story. I am currently writing for a magazine called Total Talent Showcase and i was wondering if you would like to submit your writing to the magazine. The copyright will remain yours, you will just give us the right to print it.

wildchild2007 Wrote:Hi, I love the story. I am currently writing for a magazine called Total Talent Showcase and i was wondering if you would like to submit your writing to the magazine. The copyright will remain yours, you will just give us the right to print it.


Yes, if you provide a link to the story on your site (assuming it is a webzine). If it is a hardcopy magazine then please provide information on how I may buy/obtain copies that contain my story.


Bob Zox

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