Ever since Hamlet became a vampire his afterlife has become quite complicated. Although, he still lives in the natural world he feels like an outcast. Some of the townspeople don’t trust him and the other ones are afraid.
Who is responsible for his transformation? He remembers blacking out after talking to the gravediggers. Strange teeth marks on his neck. He covered his bite marks before his epic confrontation with Claudius. After his death and buried in the coffin, he escapes back into the land of the living. And now he realizes the gravediggers had something to do with it.
Meanwhile, the Gravediggers who become clowns decide to create further mischief by bringing back Vamlet's beloved Ophelia. They give her a magic potion to help her rise from the dead. Why are they so hell-bent on destroying Vamlet’s life? This is a question better answered another time...
Back to our main characters
Vamlet tries to figure out his predicament. He talks with his faithful companion Horatio.
“There was something quite peculiar. During the play I saw the clowns dancing. I looked over and they were staring at me. Like this.”
Vamlet makes a funny face; his fangs protrude out oddly. “Just like that,” Horatio laughs.
“I noticed these clowns resembled the gravediggers. Although something was quite different...”
“It makes sense. Clowns are known to be shapeshifters, ” Horatio reiterates.
In the distance, Vamlet and Horatio see a woman struggling with her walk, reaching toward them.
Ophelia struggles, trying to pick up her dress so she doesn’t trip. They say that zombies remember certain habits they used to have. She becomes increasingly agitated as her nail falls off.
Vamlet: “Is that my Ophelia?”
As she gets closer, Vamlet and Horatio double-back.
“She no longer tickles my fancy. Especially with skin falling off her face,” Vamlet says to his faithful companion.
“Yes, just slightly less attractive,” Horatio says with an even bigger grin. Vamlet looks at him, shakes his head somewhat disgusted. Horatio continues teasing. “I think she wants a kiss.”
Vamlet stabs her in the heart. "'Til after-death us do part.” He stabs her again. “To be dead, or not to be.” She falls down. Dead once again.
“Stop with the bad lines--'tis my job,” Horatio says, smiling sarcastic.
Vamlet and Horatio are still puzzled. Why did they send her? Why was this so easy?
And one more question still lingers: Where are the clowns?
Edgar Rider has been published in E-zines such as Birmingham Art Journal, Warwick Unbound and Haggard and Halloo. He also appears in some publications under the name Bob Eager in the Beat , Right Hand Pointing, Vision with Voices, Static Movement and Rusty Truck.
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