A Steampunk Guide to Hunting Monsters 19 - Page 10

postpone the wedding, but he said we had one chance to capture this vampire, and we needs must take it. He said, and I'm sure he thought it was grandly noble and not at all silly, "I would risk a thousand deaths to make you my wife!" S UNDAY , D ECEMBER THE T WELFTH Now our monster hunting tour friends have arrived. We have told them about our situation and they have stationed themselves most ably around the house. Missus Mister and Sir Hammerhorn are armed to the teeth. Brunhilde Bamfi eld has distributed a vast array of charms and vials of holy water to the guests under the guise of party favors. M ONDAY , D ECEMBER THE T HIRTEENTH Th e wedding is over. As I sit here and recount the events of the day, I make it no secret that I survived, but at what cost? Everything was going swimmingly. Th e guests were all assembled, and all protected from vampire villainy by our valiant eff orts to literally bless every bottle of wine during the course of their weeklong party. A vampire dare not drink such intoxicated and holy blood at any rate. Th e sky was dark, ominous and cloudy, then. Good English Weather, if not good wedding weather. My dress was all I had ever dreamed! 25 yards of ivory silk fl owed from my train, and the sheer volume of fabric required for each sleeve was a brilliant sight to behold! Th e decorated Swiss waist featured a ruched panel of fabric which made for a pretty eff ect, I think. Oh, I forgot to mention: the lace panel on front is the sole remaining remnant from my own mother's wedding gown! Since the gown is lined in blue silk, this gives the dress "something old,” "something new,” and "something blue.” I borrowed the wooden stake buried in my bouquet from Brunhilde Bamfi eld, and with a sixpence in my shoe, I was ready for the wedding! I spent several pleasant moments walking the crowded central aisle of the chapel; each guest was liberally strewn with colorful and unusual knick- knacks, and was smiling gaily at me, and the whole place was scented with rosewater and garlic. One's senses were quite overwhelmed! Th ere was no vampire in sight! Mrs. Bamfi eld held a crucifi x fi rmly in hand and encouraged me down the aisle. Th ere stood my husband. We eased down together onto one of the plush velvet benches, and I was overcome by the wonder of marrying the man I loved. Our love was so deep in that moment that it seemed a tangible presence around us, and the look on his face—oh, how can I describe the look on his face? I felt I was an entirely new person, seen for the fi rst time. It was an invigorating sensation. Th e priest asked if any among the group assembled objected to our wedding. And apparently Lord Ruthven Gowrie did! "I object," the vampire said. He was clad in the black of shadows, light vying to escape—sparkling as it were, and as no vampire ought—and he strode down the aisle. Dear Aunt—who had apparently been quite shocked at the man's appearance, for she was transported by the sway of love—began to clutch at her reticule, calling for her smelling salts. Percy, however, did not leap to her aid as would have been his normal behavior. Instead, he took up my bouquet, passing it to me, and laid his hand on his sword. "Never," the vampire said, "has so high a house, a rank second only to the King, deigned to marry a child so low. With no parents to call her own, she dashes about from one place to another, with no family worth mentioning." I do believe Uncle tried to object to this, but became afraid when the Lord rotated his head slightly in that direction. "No family name, no value, no worth. Can I, a Lord of the Realm and Earl, maintain any peace of mind knowing that any number of progeny may