They are. All of them. Don't be afraid. Knock on the door of Blackstone House. That's your first step. Of course it might be your last.
Unimaginable horror awaits you in The House on Blackstone Moor... Rose Baines' journey into the dark begins with the murders of her family by her insane, incestuous father. Evil has found a way in, as has the world of the undead. Will she become one of them?
The horrific discovery causes her to be incarcerated in two madhouses. Doctor Bannion, superintendent of Marsh Asylum, helps his favorite patient obtain a position as governess at Blackstone House, but why is he so adamant? The house, her charges tell her, is built on haunted moorland. Nothing is as it seems for Blackstone House, and its inhabitants have hideous secrets; the greatest secret of all is that of the blood.
Amid the unimaginable horror there is love - which comes at a terrible price. The House on Blackstone Moor is the first novel in Carole Gill's Blackstone Vampires Series. It is an epic tale of the eternal struggle of good vs. evil, and a story of love that strives to prevail, despite all odds.
"The air was still and somewhat warm. Low clouds hugged the horizon. There was thunder too from somewhere far away. I would have preferred to see the moors in the sunshine, for the moody atmosphere made it look grimly forbidding. Yet I didn’t wish to spoil the children’s fun.
“When you walk to town, go along through there—you see at the bottom of that cliff, there’s an old footpath there—too, you can’t miss it.”
I made a mental note of it, although I didn’t know when I might go.
The children both held onto me. “Mind your step.”
I listened, as they had already frightened me as to the moor’s dangerous conditions.
“And the weather changes so quickly, too.” Simon’s voice was grave. “Sometimes an entire herd of sheep have been known to perish!”
Ada shook her head. “Not so many as that, Simon; don’t be such a liar!”
Simon looked angry. “It’s true, I know it is so.”
“Well,” I said. “Whether it is or isn’t, I’m certain I shall be very careful where I tread.”
Each of them, it seemed to me, was vying with the other for my attention. Ada pointed out rocks and brush and Simon spoke of yet more doom and gloom.
Suddenly, they began to pull me forward. “This is the most fantastic thing you will ever see! Oh do hurry, Miss Baines!” Ada was most impatient.
Simon tapped her. “She will see it in her own good time.”
“What is it, children? What do you wish me to see?”
They exchanged mysterious looks to further dramatize the situation.
“Yonder, Miss! Do you want to see the ancient stone of legend?”
“What legend is that, Simon?”
Ada spoke up. “The legend of Blackstone Moor!”
They began to drag me then toward a rocky mount. “Just in here.”
I was led through a narrow crevice. It quite reminded me of Stonehenge. I wondered what it could be and began to grow excited, too.
Suddenly we stopped as Simon pointed at a large flat rock. “There, that’s it!”
It looked like a ledge that had been deliberately laid down. I went to touch it but Ada warned me. “Touch it only if you dare!”
“I dare!” I cried. The surface was far smoother than I would have imagined.
“See how black it is, Miss?”
“Quite black,” I agreed.
Simon nodded. “It’s as black as the eternal night! And do you know why it’s black, Miss Baines? It’s black with blood!”
“Yes, truly! It has blackened with blood and gore and innards and guts and things that soaked into the stone!”
“What a thing to say! Where did you hear such things?”
“I just know! Ada and I both know!”
I drew him aside. “Simon,” I chided. “You should know better. This is not something either of you should think about, but it’s worse for Ada since she’s younger than you. You ought to know that.”
He looked down. “I suppose, but Ada’s older than you think!”
“Is she indeed, well I don’t think it appropriate, alright?”
“Yes, Miss Baines.”
“I don’t think it’s a subject for children. Besides, it’s probably not true anyway.”
He was agreeing with me, yet there appeared across his face the most quizzical look. “But there were human sacrifices practiced on these moors once and all manner of dark rites, too. Many people died here.”
This was making me feel sick.
“Who told you this?”
“Don’t lie, Simon.”
“Someone I can’t say…” Ada was watching him wide-eyed. Clearly she didn’t want him to give me a name, but I continued to press him.
At last he cracked. “Dora! It was Dora! Do you feel better now?!”
“It’s not that I feel better, I just wanted to know who told you such things.”
Ada looked at me intently. “Please, you won’t have Dora punished, will you?”
“No, of course not, but whatever do you mean?”
Ada shook her head. “She might be severely punished, that’s all.”
She quite unsettled me with that. But then I took it to mean she might be sacked. “Well, I shall only speak to her then, alright?”
“Oh yes, Miss. Thank you, Miss.”
I took their hands then and we headed back to the house, the children walking just ahead of me, whispering. And I watching their backs, wondering what they were saying."
Book 2, Unholy Testament - The Beginnings:
Rose and her children find themselves held captive on a ship staffed by vampires, overseen by the mad and evil demon Eco. The last time Rose saw Eco he tried to destroy the children, and now he tells her he loves her.
“I saw you leave the house that day, Rose. That terrible day you discovered your family butchered. I saw you…”
Eco, believing he has fallen in love with her, pens a confession documenting all sins he has committed during his immortal existence.
From Ancient Egyptian vampire cults, Roman vampire brothels, The Dark Ages, The Crusades, The Black Death of 1348, on to his meeting with the child murderer and Satanist Gilles de Rais, and concluding with his wicked, blood-soaked affair with the Blood Countess herself, Erzebat Bathory. The pages are filled with debauchery, vice and murder – how can one stained with so much blood and evil possibly be trusted?
"As the girl had been drained and was of no further use, she had the corpse taken away and had another girl brought in, and another after that.
“This should get us through the night.” She smiled as she sank her teeth into the girl’s soft white flesh.
“Do you never drink the blood, Countess?” I asked.
She looked up with her blood stained teeth and smiled. “Never, or I should be a wanton vampiric creature and not the noble lady that I am.”
The irony of that remark did not cause her to smile, but made her look even wickeder if that was possible.
The hours passed and with them the barbarous torture of more young girls; girls that were bitten and stabbed. She had a variety of implements she used in her torture—like pincers that either she or a servant heated before their use.
Though I am ashamed to admit it, I must say the torture fascinated me. I could not move away, nor could I even turn my head.
Have you never looked at a train wreck or an overturned carriage? Most people have. There is, I fear, the beast in all of us."
Book Three, Unholy Testament - Full Circle
Rose and her childrens' ordeal continues. They are still held on a ship whose crew are vampires, overseen by the demon Eco.
There are more blood-drenched confessions to read. Rose has no choice but to finish the journal. Eco, mad and as unpredictable as ever, can snap at any time. But will he?
The rest of the journal tells of the sick and twisted obsession Eco has had for Blackstone House's former mistress, evil and debauched Eve Darton. There are aristocratic devil rites, both in England and France, including satanic sacrifices. There is the Great Fire of London 1666, plagues, vampire destroyers, witch hunts and resurrection men who supply a necrophile doctor.
The novel comes full circle as all the hideous secrets of Blackstone House are revealed, as are the reasons Rose’s father killed himself and his family.
Dracula is introduced, as is a child cruelly orphaned by the vampires. Dracula, the child’s dying mother says, has cursed her daughter and pleads with Rose to take her. Rose does, but what hope can the hopeless have?
"At last we came to my lodgings. They weren’t bad as lodgings go, but clearly it was not up to her standards. Still, she said nothing. Her lips curved and she began to undress.
When she stood naked before me, I cried out: “You have the beauty of Venus.”
She giggled and drew me to her, her hoarse voice whispering to me. “I want you to taste me. I want you to make love to me with your mouth and your tongue. I am yours for this afternoon and after that, too, if you should like it.”
Oh, Rose, forgive me, for I shall not be too descriptive so as to offend your sensibilities. But truly, this was an experience I would never forget.
She would become my addiction. Yes, Rose—Eve would become a raging fever, an exotic disease I would contract and treasure. I never knew anyone—vampiric or human—like that. Insatiable, her desire knew no bounds, which only intrigued me more!
Sometime later, a wench poked her head in. She apologized but Eve invited her in. Actually, she did more than invite her in; she began to fondle the girl.
“You might as well know now, my love,” she said to me. “I like variety.”
I watched them for the longest time, and then joined in. Our lovemaking went on for hours. It wasn’t until the girl slept that I told Eve I knew what she was.
“You are a creature of the blood as I am.”
She didn’t ask me how I knew. She only smiled. “Let us feast on this girl,” she said. “And then I shall tell you about myself.”
Book Four, The Fourth Bride (of Dracula)
After the tragic and sudden death of her groom, Dia, cursed by Dracula as a babe, is taken to his castle.
Once there, she is seduced and turned by the count to become his fourth bride. The other brides are to be her sisters, but there is great rivalry as the brides compete for their master’s affection. Dracula takes Dia away, but to whose castle has he taken her and are they being watched?
Dracula’s gypsies are loyal to their master and will try to save him, but the destroyers led by Van Helsing come and there is great carnage. Still, for one, there is salvation from the unlikeliest of saviors. There is betrayal and a freak show run by evil men, as well as the greatest passion Dia will ever know, but can she trust it?
And what of Dracula’s greatest vampire enemy, the one who has fallen in love with Dia; the nobleman Dracula turned. Can he be trusted?
"I moaned as the hands continued to sweep over me. Gentle yet persistent fingers probed my secret places—places previously unexplored—caressing and invading my body. Lips replaced fingers. Icy lips, blue with undeath but soon to be reddened with life, my life—but I did not know then, that would be one of my very first lessons.
I felt two at my neck and one at my breast. Then I felt something sharp stab into flesh and nearly cried out but fell silent. For there by the fire stood a man. I could only make out that he was tall and slender. He moved toward the bed. Not to help me but to watch. . . !
At last I knew I was not dreaming. There were three women touching me and whispering as they did.
“Yes, now,” the man said.
Once again I felt their teeth upon my flesh. “We drink you and love you. . . ”
It was only painful for a moment for when one bit me, another caressed me. And so it went on like that for an eternity it seemed. I drifted away then, retreating into a warm place full of shadows, a netherworld so near the living one. How I wished to remain there.
In my mind I saw myself covered by three female figures and a male as well. I opened my eyes to see Dracula’s own burning like two red coals. I saw in their depths a new world I would soon be entering.
I watched as his mouth sought my neck and then my breasts. I felt the sharp sting of his teeth and the pressure of his suckling and drawing out of my blood. Yet, it was pleasurable and I wished him to do whatever he liked. There had never been a greater pleasure than this for me. I cried out in ecstasy.
After he fed he pulled away and in the semi dark I saw my blood on him. .
“Beloved!” he cried. “Now you shall drink from me, for it is our wedding. I watched as he slit open his chest. “Drink and you shall never know death.”
And so I did.
I was thirsty and lapped it up. There was no wine sweeter than this; his own ruby port. As I swallowed, I saw images of a life. . . a boy becoming a man. I saw battles and bloodshed, joy and sorrow. In the light and darkness of the visions appeared faces of creatures I could not identify. And then I saw the sisters calling out to me.
At first I thought I was still dreaming, but then I smelled their blood. “Sister, you are one of us now,” they said in unison.
I watched as they bent over me, each taking a part of me as though I were a feast set before them.
“They drink from your fountain for you are the new covenant. You are ours now and forever,” Dracula said."
eFestival of Words 2014: Best Villain, Eco/ Best Horror, The House on Blackstone Moor
"92 Horror authors you need to read right now"
Carole Gill -- the Blackstone Vampires series
~Charlotte Books - EXAMINER
"In the attempt to find the just measure of horror and terror, I came upon the writing of Carole Gill whose work revealed a whole new dimension to me. The figure of the gothic child was there. Stoker's horror was there. Along with the romance! At the heart of her writing one stumbles upon a genuine search for that darkness we lost with the loss of Stoker."
DR. MARGARITA GEORGIEVA ~ Gothic Readings in The Dark
The House on Blackstone Moor:
"Carole Gill presents a monstrous mythology that evokes Milton and makes you resent any time you must take away from finishing this fabulous read!"
Unholy Testament - The Beginnings
"Outstanding horror by an amazing author!! Gave me the creeps! Ms. Gil really immerses the reader in her well-crafted and frightening dark world!"
Unholy Testament - Full Circle
"Is full of dark, gory, evil and heinous twist and turns which keeps your adrenaline going. Unholy Testament - Full Circle with all of the horrific things that goes on in it is just right up my alley. And believe me you definitely get plenty of evil in Unholy Testament - Full Circle. The ending left me with my mouth hanging open it was so surprising. I never expected it but I loved it."
NANCY ALLAN - Avid Reader
The Fourth Bride
Creepy and full of evil! Carole is by far the master story teller of vampire gothic horror. Once you pick this novel up there will be nothing more important than getting to the last page! There are more dark twists and turns than a roller coaster!
WENDE SHEETS ~ Julie's Book Review