203 06 June 18th 2017


Like the Vampiri, Pansy was attracted to crowds for the easy prey. She also preferred to work at night. The bloodsuckers never bothered her. No wounds at her throat in the morning and no missing time—that she remembered.

For effect, Pansy supposed, VIPs had scheduled this ceremony for the evening. Spotlights played over the courthouse and red flags waved from a podium. A yellow construction crane idled nearby, its arm extended, claw closed on a canvas draped at the top. The new Russian “mayor” was as good as a tent preacher. Pansy worked the pockets and purses of a crowd enthralled by ideologies pouring from stage in a torrent.

When silence fell, Pansy retreated to the periphery. The crane roared and a thousand faces lifted toward the courthouse apex. Pansy scanned the shadows at the gathering’s edge and was sure she spotted one of the Vampiri in black shirt and jeans.

The crowd sighed collectively. Pansy glanced up. The eagle perched atop the courthouse for two centuries was gone, and the two-headed Russian version gleamed like gold in its place. The crowd churned with cheers and clapping. Pansy faded back, taking the same road as the Vampiri.


Sunday Photo Fiction: 200-word stories

Photo Prompt: A Mixed Bag