Published April 01, 2016 by

Short Story: Earnest Young Is Forever Young

Hello here is a short story about that I wrote about vampires three years ago but I only just edited it recently. I hope that you can enjoy it.

Summary: Earnest Young is a struggling artist living in poverty in the 1920s. His only hope at salvation is the mysterious vampire Mr.Wright who he discovered living next door.

"No, no, I won't do it, no more!" Cried a young blond man as he trudged through the snow. His skin was pale, his fingers bony, and his eyes were sunken in from lack of sleeping.

But what drew the attention of all who walked by, was not his fatigue or neglected appearance, it was his lack of shoes on that freezing winter's night. He was dressed only in a thin pair of pants, a crisp white shirt, and his feet lacked anything to prevent frostbite. But to the horror and amazement of all, instead of freezing from the cold and curling up into a ball to shiver, the man easily bulldozed through the snow like it was the middle of summer.

"No, no, absolutely not!” He wailed as he pushed through the crowd of workers returning home. Onlookers stopped to stare at the man who should have been frozen before they brushed off the spectacle and returned on their way.

"Why, why not?" Yelled Earnest, as he fought through the crowd to catch up with the blond man. "Why won't you turn me into a vampire?"

At the word vampire, the man stopped and froze like he'd been stabbed in the back, and Earnest used this opportunity to catch a must needed breath. Earnest bent over and grabbed his knees for support. His chest burned like fire and frantically moved up and down. Unlike the man before him, Earnest was wearing every piece of clothing he owned, which still wasn't enough to keep out the cruel winter cold. His coat was worn and covered with holes, and his shoes and pants were a sight to behold. Earnest's clothing wasn't the only thing in need of attention. His short brown hair was messy and unkempt, and his sea blue eyes were tired and drained. It wasn't unusual for this boy of nineteen to be mistaken for an older man without any home.

"When will you leave me alone?" Asked the vampire who oozed sadness. "Why is it always you who follows me home?"

"Please Mr. Wright," begged Earnest. "I ask only one thing, please make me a vampire so that I can escape this dreadful mortality."

"Don't call me that!" Boomed the vampire. "I'm not Mr. Wright. That's the name of the man who I killed in order to rest my head in the daylight!"

"Then how should I address you?" Asked Earnest with a hint of hope. "It's only fitting that I know the name of the man who shall deliver me into immortality."

"Immortality, you say," said the vampire with a chuckle. "You treat my curse like it's something desirable."

"It's not a curse Mr. Wright," said Earnest and he saw the vampire flinch. "The way I see it, it's more like a gift from heaven. There's no need to worry about money or age, and it apparently protects you from this blistering cold."

"You're a fool,” said the vampire, and Earnest noticed that his eyes were unnaturally red. “You see vampirism as a magical thing from a children's fairytale, and you have no idea about the truth of your words."

"That's not true," said Earnest. "I've thought about this every day, and there's nothing I desire more than to become one of you!"

The vampire's breath hitched in his throat, and he began to shake, but the man quickly composed himself and looked at Earnest dead on. "I'll tell you this once so listen well. Today's the last day you'll find me walking along this road. I'm leaving forever and don't bother to find me. I'm going to a place far removed from your world."

"But Mr. Wright!" Pleaded Earnest once more in desperation, but in the blink of an eye the vampire disappeared into the crowd.

"Mr. Wright!" He yelled in a panic, but no matter how fast he ran, or who he shoved out of his way, the vampire was gone and Earnest found himself alone. He kicked his boot in the snow and sighed in frustration. As furious as he was, he had no other choice but to make his way home.

Earnest Young lived on the bad side of town. It was a place where the poor, wretched, and needy called home. The buildings were worn down, gloomy, decrepit, and Earnest's apartment building was no exception. It was six floors high with a dirty stone exterior, and there were various broken windows which all had dim candles flickering within them. Outside men gathered in small groups smoking, and Earnest could overhear the occasional word in German or Italian.

He gulped and suppressed his feeling of dread, because unlike most people Earnest despised going home. He shuddered, pulled his coat around his face, shoved his hands into his pockets, and attempted to bolt towards the main door.

"Hey, Young!" Yelled a man who emerged from the crowd to block his way. He was tall, dark, hairy, and had a beard like a mane. "You're two months behind in the rent. I've told you before. When are you going to pay up young scoundrel, it's soon or else!"

"Give me a break Mr. McClain," said Earnest shortly. He was still irritated about the vampire's escape. "I said I’ll pay you as soon as they sell."

"Sell?" Laughed a man smoking in the crowd. "Doesn't that fool know it's hard enough to find a job, let alone sell works of art?"

"A painter, he calls himself," said another man lounging outside. "But a five-year-old child could surpass him for sure."

Earnest suppressed his rage as his cheeks turn red, if he'd been an angrier man, he would have pounded their heads in.

“Look, Mr. Young," said the landlord with more sympathy. "You have three days to pay me my money or you're out on the street."

“But-” Earnest protested, but the man cut him off.

“Three days Mr. Young, that's my final word.”

Earnest gritted his teeth and nodded his head as his neighbours smirked at his terrible luck. He avoided their glares, looked towards the floor, and with two shaking hands pushed open the large front door.

The corridor had no lighting. It was dark and eerie, but many small children were running around playing. He climbed the creaky wooden staircase, avoided the holes, and Earnest finally landed on the fifth floor. The oil lamps were dim and it was difficult to see, but Earnest steadily walked forward until he was before room 503.

He reached forward and touched the nameplate which had been engraved with the name Wright. He ran his fingers over the word before growling in frustration, and with the toe of his boot he sternly kicked the wooden door. He knew the vampire was gone and would never come back, but that didn't stop him from banging on the wood until his hands were red.

“Why? Why wouldn't you make me a vampire?” He sighed in defeat. Earnest pressed his ear against the door and listened for movement, but the room was as dead as the deceased Mr. Wright.

His hopes had been thoroughly crushed, and Earnest had no choice but to retreat to his room next door. With a turn of a key and a click of a lock, the door opened to unveil the place that Earnest called home.

It was slightly larger than a closet and had enough room for a bed, a chamber pot, an easel, and a pile of paintings almost three feet high. It smelt of old cigarettes, rotten food, and stale bread. And as hard as he tried he could never clean all the grime from the walls.

The room was a far cry from the brilliant future he'd imagined as a boy on the farm. He'd dreamed of becoming the country's most famous painter, but there was no progress so far. He'd naively disobeyed the wishes of his father and created his own hell, where there was nothing but poverty and his inability to break through. As hard as he painted, no matter how frantically he tried, Earnest had yet to sell one piece of art.

Time was running out. His landlord never lied, and Earnest was terrified that he'd soon have no place to sleep at night.

With a sigh of despair, he collapsed in front of his easel to stare at his newest piece of art. It was a painting of a brilliant party. Colourful people danced merrily, and several sparkling chandeliers hung from a tall glamorous ceiling.

With one shaking hand Earnest picked up his brush, dipped the tip into the paint, and continued his work. He worked half the night until his hand began to ache, but no matter how hard he tried he could not capture the scene that he'd witnessed that night.

The night that he met the vampire who killed Mr. Wright.

Two weeks ago Earnest had been staring at his blank easel in vein. He had no idea what to paint or an ounce of inspiration in his brain. Fed up with staring at his narrow four walls, Earnest decided to take a short walk in the cold. The streets were dark and not a soul was to be seen. Earnest greatly regretted his decision and decided to leave.

But that was the moment when he saw something which he shouldn't have seen.

This is the end of the free preview. You can purchase the whole short story for the low price of 99 cents on Payhip!

Buy Now
If you like free stuff please check out my free story Diary of a Soul here!

Summary: Ethan is a soul with no memories who it doomed to spend eternity in Hell. Luckily he is purchased by the beautiful master Alistair who showers him with affection, until one day when his sheltered existence comes to an abrupt end. Ethan has to decided whether to accept his fate, or fight back and become more than just a regular soul.