Owen found the weak and terrified gypsy hiding in the abandoned Church, her infant son bundled in a basket at her feet. The night before he'd watched her dance, with drunken abandon, half naked around the bonfire. Now, still in the provocative costume, she stood defiantly before him swearing that she was not one of the gypsies but their captive. From her manner and speech he knew she was high born but who was she really?
Word Count: 236,959
Genre: Fantasy/Paranormal Romance
Available formats: PDF, RTF, Epub, HTML, Mobipocket (.prc)
© Cover Art by Alex DeShanks, August 2010
New Concepts Publishing
Lake Park, GA 31636
This is a work of fiction. All characters, events, and places are of the author's imagination and not to be confused with fact. Any resemblance to living persons or events is merely coincidence.
If the raven flies in the time of night,
Be sure and be aware,
Something is not right.
To the lucky majority who did not live there, it was known as the East End, the Whitechapel district of London. For those who were born, lived and died there it was ‘The City of Evil Night’.
One of the thousands who squeezed into those few city blocks was a young woman named Jilly. Like her mother and grandmother, she had no idea who her father was. He was just one of many bitter men, taking lonely comfort on the cold streets. Deserted by
her mother at nine, survival came as it had for her hapless female ancestors, in prostitution.
It was a steaming hot and humid Sunday night. Jilly was preparing herself for the night of struggling for pennies in very dangerous ways.
“Look at her, tarting herself up like she was somethin’ special. Next thing we will have to call her ‘your Highness!’” one of the two whores Jilly shared her small room with laughed as Jilly tied up her hair in new pink ribbons.
“Now you be quiet, Mad Mary!” Rosie laughed and teased, “Jill’s has got her fob on for tonight!”
“Ah…you are just jealous because you ain’t got regulars!” Jilly sneered.
“Jesus, Jilly, no one would ever pay two times to screw Mad Mary. Come on, sweetie, I will walk down with you. I’ll see what I can pick up at the Bells.”
“Why’d you stay here, Jilly?” Rosie asked as they made their way down the narrow stairs and out onto the filthy, cobbled street. “I know you got a stash of money someplace! Why don’t you take it and get out of this shitting hole?”
“How’d you know I have a stash?”
“Lord Sakes! You make more than all of us put together, you don’t drink and hardly eat a potato…you must have a pile by now!”
“Well, that ain’t none of your matter, Rosie!” Jilly answered with a touch of anger, and then softened her voice. “We were born here and we will die here. You know that! Anyway, what would I do any other place but whoring? I’ll stay where I am planted till
the Lord takes me,” Jilly kissed her friend’s cheek and walked away. Rosie never saw her again.
She met her regular, a fellow who called himself Mr. Stone, at the long forgotten ‘Friars Cemetery’, where the borders of Whitechapel touched London proper. He was better than most to her. He was clean, kind, fast and generous. She went out of her way to please him.
She hurried that Sunday night, so as not to be late, ignoring the rabble who hurled demands and insults at her as she passed. Through the broken gate and across the overgrown lawn, she tried not to step on any graves as she made her way to the tangled mess behind a crypt where ‘Mr. Stone’ would be waiting for her.
Little moonlight made it into that place and she had to feel her way around to the back of the crypt. “Mr. Stone, you here?” she called out quietly. There was no reply. She stopped, small fingers of fear stirred up her spine. “Oh, don’t be silly!” she chided herself and forced a further step forward only to trip and fall on her face.
“Hell!” she exclaimed. Pulling herself to a squat, she ran her hands over the ground until she came to what had caused her to trip. She first felt an arm, then shoulder, then the warm wet mess that had been the neck of Mr. Stone.
Jilly had no time to realize what she had found or to flee. She heard the monster fly down from the treetop and grunt as he landed behind her. He pulled her into his powerful arms. Pushing one hand across her mouth and lifting her body to his flat, pug-like face, he smelt her belly and knew she was disease free. With Jilly tightly in his claws, he flew off into the night sky. She cried for help, but any who heard her thought little of it. Her misery was just another sound in the City of Evil Night.
She was now the property of the abomination known as ‘One Wing’. He had ruled the tunnels and natural grottos that intertwined deep beneath the southeastern British countryside for a thousand years. Unable to leave his lair, he spent his existence in the pursuit of creating a perfect child and heir. This child would be without his monstrous body and many physical defects. He would have a perfect human body and the soulless, evil mind of Satan. A child One Wing could control who would walk the earth in the place of his father.
During the weeks that followed Jilly was drugged, hooded and manacled to a bed. So clouded were her thoughts, she had no real knowledge of the silent, huge body that abused her nightly.
One morning she woke to find the hood gone and her mind clear. For the first time she saw the prison that held her. A hundred distant candles did very little to push back the blackness of the large damp cave. Bars that circled the bed, reached far up to the stone roof overhead. But for the constant drip of water there were no other sounds. Her calls for help and attention went unanswered.
From that morning on, the drugging and the abuse stopped. Every morning when she woke there was fresh food and water on a table by the bed and a clean, porcelain pot on
the floor. She never saw or heard anyone, human or otherwise. Fear and loneliness were her only companions.
In time, she began to sense he was watching her. Occasionally she spotted silver eyes peering at her through the darkness. She cried, begged and threatened but he never said a word. He watched her for months, as though she was a pet in a cage. He was waiting for his child.
The waters broke and the pains came. For two days, Jilly fought to bring her child to birth. Exhausted and broken with pain she called out to the watching, silver eyes, “Help me! If I die, so will the babe…please help me?”
Slowly One Wing stood from his seat, entered her cell, and for the first time she saw him for what he really was. She screamed once and fainted. He laid her flat on her back, hooked one deadly sharp claw into her vagina and ripped her body open with a smooth quick moment. He pulled her flesh aside reached in and brought out his son. Jilly was dead and Emile Soskice was born.