The Paris Awakening: Invocation – Part 9

The last thing Sir John remembered was Bisset shooting at him. The next thing he appeared to be flying over Paris.

“Good Lord!” he thought. “Have I been killed and am now flying to another, better place.” 

He felt in quick measure a sharp sadness that he wouldn’t see Marie again, a fascination as to what he would learn as a disembodied entity and then sudden motion sickness as he began a descent. 

“Oh,” he thought, “I didn’t think I’d been that wicked.”

He looked around and realised he was being held by mechanical arms, along with a wriggling sack, by a strange black creature with springs for feet. The creature landed on the earth and began to rise again. Sir John wondered briefly if there was some ambivalence as to which destination he was heading to when a penny began descending along with the black creature. It was hard to breathe with the rushing air and the rebound from hitting the ground so Sir John waited until he was at the apex to speak.

“Phlebotomous!” he said then the breath was snatched out of him as they once again descended.

“Yes!” said Phlebotomous at the next apex. Sir John was pleased for the confirmation but was rather hoping for more detail.

“Stop bouncing?” said Sir John once they reached the peak again, hoping the interminable parabola would end.

“Can’t. Gargoyles,” replied Phlebotomous, nodding back with his head.

As they descended again, Sir John tried to twist to look backwards. He could see the Notre Dame as they once again hit the Paris streets. They appeared to have landed somewhere in the Sorbonne. Then as they rose he saw shapes moving on the roofs and pavements. At first it seemed like they were birds as he saw wings and claws. They descended again whilst he puzzled over what Phlebotomous had said and what he had seen. As they rose again he looked and saw the creatures were moving fast, almost keeping pace with them and seemingly heading the same way. It took him until the peak to see clearly the army that was pursuing them.

“Oh b…” he began before his breath was snatched away. The trio descended and rose a few more times until they landed in the Jardin des Plantes. One of the springs on Phlebotomous’ feet embedded firmly into the grass and soil. Momentum took the vampire up a little, but the spring held firm and so he tipped forward. Sir John, Phlebotomous and the wriggling sack landed heavily on the ground. Phlebotomous immediately opened the sack and put his head in. There was a squeal of delight and he pulled out his head.

“It’s Osvold, he’s safe,” said Phlebotomous. Sir John couldn’t see through the vampire’s full body suit, but it sounded like Phlebotomous was smiling.

Sir John looked at the far side of the park and saw movement in the trees. Creatures jumped from tree to tree, scanning the ground before looking at him and heading his way.

“In a manner of speaking,” he said.

The Paris Awakening: Invocation – Part 8

Morag jumped up at Bisset and was punched to the ground by one of the big men. Bisset went to shoot Morag when the man held his arm. Bisset looked in shock at the man.

“It’s just a dog, boss,” said the man.

Bisset rolled his eyes but put the pistol away. 

“Now what?” he said.

“Now we make the key,” said Pook holding up the small metal key piece.

Bisset smiled and produced the other key pieces. He looked at Pook expectantly but the other man held out his hands.

“If you would be so kind?” said Pook.

“Naturally,” said Bisset through gritted teeth and handed over the key pieces. The two bodyguards glanced at each other and one shrugged.

Pook concentrated on putting the key together. The circular earth piece had the fire piece, a metal stick around seven inches long, inserted into a hole on its edge. Then the water piece, looking like a small pipe, was attached perpendicular to the fire stick at the other end, creating a shape not unlike a key. Finally the air wire was attached to the water piece at one end and the earth disk at the other, running parallel to the fire stick. The whole thing looked like a hack saw.

“I assume we can unlock the weapon now and use it to kill Sir John?” said Pook.

“Ah, Mr Pook,” said Bisset, looking smug. “I must disabuse you of two concepts where you have been mistaken by a terrible mistranslation.”

“How so?” said Pook, looking puzzled.

“This key is not a key for a lock, but a musical key,” he said. “Please tap the key against the cathedral to see what I mean.”

Pook, looked suspicious, but did as he was told and hit the key against the flying buttress behind him. The key made a humming sound and the buttress began to resonate with the same tone. The tone seemed to spread through the cathedral as the two closest buttresses also started to resonate and hum with the tone, and soon the whole apse was producing a sympathetic tone. Finally the sound spread through the whole cathedral, and it seemed as if the air and the ground were vibrating too.

One of the bodyguards looked up at the cathedral then gasped. His companion followed his gaze and swore loudly, then crossed himself.

“And the word you translated as weapon – arme – is actually armée,” said Bisset.

“There are,” said Pook staring at the cathedral, eyes widening, “there are dozens of them.”

“May I present,” said Bisset with a flourish, “the gargoyles of Notre Dame, the army of Paris.”

The gargoyles all gathered above Pook looking down at him expectantly.

“Go find and kill Sir John Jennings,” cried out Pook, holding the key firm, but with his voice wavering.

“We obey,” said the gargoyles in unison and a hundred stone creatures leapt from the cathedral in pursuit of Sir John.