As easy as it would be to conquer humanity, and as much as it needed conquering, Vlad chose to bide his time. As an immortal, he could enslave all creation whenever he wanted. Now all he wanted was red wine.
Some faction of the community sent him gift baskets that they called offerings. Today’s collection contained the typical bries and pinot noirs, which made a nice gesture, but the other bottle, filled with human blood, was almost insulting in its implication. The various small animal corpses were similarly patronizing. He would dispose of them when he had the stomach.
He spread some brie on a communion wafer. The sizzle felt good in his mouth and made the fruitiness of the wine all the more welcome.
“Lord Dracula,” came a voice from beyond the door. “I apologize for entering your domain without permission, but I assumed you would not hear my lowly knock from your exalted tower.”
Vlad waved his hand at the door, and glared at the peasant, who led on a leash a young woman draped in white sheets, tied in white ribbon.
“Your excellency, I hope you received our tribute.”
Vlad tipped his wine glass in answer.
“But we didn’t want you to think we were trying to placate you, my lord. I have brought my eldest daughter for you as a sacrifice, to do with as you see fit.”
“Oh that’s quite all right. I don’t need any sacrifices right now.”
He looked at the girl, and as she heard him, she turned her head away in shame.
Her father looked angry. “I apologize that the sacrifice is inadequate, my lord. Please spare our village!”
Vlad sighed, and with a shrug, stripped her body bare and drained her blood.
“Mm, thank you so much. My favorite.”