The Undead Life of Harlow Kaine · Writing

The Undead Life of Harlow Kaine (3)

Harlow was a woman of simple ambitions.

All she’d ever wanted was a chance to do what she loved, and in this case, what she loved was managing other people’s money, and helping them realize their own ambitions. Nothing had made her quite as happy as the day she’d been promoted to be THE accountant for the Coven’s finances. She was the one Olivier discussed business opportunities with and genuinely trusted her judgement. They had certainly developed more of a friendship than a “master/servant” relationship he might have had with others. Her mother would appreciate that she was sure.

After frequent discussions about what Harlow wanted to do with her life, Olivier had even set funds aside for her to go to college, which the auburn-haired vampiress had taken advantage of in the 1960’s when the coven was still living in Boston. She’d graduated before the 1970’s arrived from Bentley University with several master’s degrees in finance and accounting, working on them as simultaneously as she was allowed to. Afterwards she worked in New York for several years for the experience. When the 1980’s arrived Olivier announced that the senior members of the coven were moving to Seattle to take advantage of the “more agreeable” weather conditions, and Harlow decided to accompany them. She was elevated to Coven accountant in 1986 after their original accountant, Jonah West, was found to have tried to embezzle funds and also hired several vampire hunters (through human proxies) to knock off the other senior coven members.

Harlow had caught him purely by coincidence. After the move to Seattle she had taken a job in the coven’s small bookkeeping department to handle “household expenses” and had easily situated herself at it’s head by 1983. She supervised everything, periodically reviewing the work of others to check if their skills were being well utilized. It hadn’t taken her long to discover that several checks were being written by Jonah to several outside sources and names that she didn’t recognize on their payroll. Knowing what happened the last time she spied on someone she immediately took her concerns to Olivier and, with suitable backup, starting making discreet inquiries about where this money had come from and where it was going.

Two weeks later, Jonah was dead and Harlow had been promoted in his place; her education, experience, and service to the coven listed as reasons for such a prestigious honor to be given to a vampire so young. Most senior members in the coven were hundreds of years old and had been with their Master’s for almost as long. She was truly honored by Olivier’s generosity and the rest of the coven seemed congratulatory over her success. She vowed that his trust in her wouldn’t be abused or misplaced.

Now, almost forty years later she had helped the coven’s various businesses grow and prosper. She encouraged August Alagona, Olivier’s trusted second-in-command to pursue law degrees in business and real estate. At the same time, third-in-command Rosemary Swan, once a dressmaker in Victorian England, finally pursued an art degree and hung the diploma proudly in her study. She encouraged Olivier to make a general fund available for coven members to pursue education if they wished and to her surprise he listened. Only a few fellow members had taken advantage of it so far, but the money would always be there and available to them if they wanted it.

The irony perhaps, in finally achieving her dreams of financial management and encouragement was that no one thought that the petite, auburn-haired vampiress was simple. She was fine with that.

Prompt generated from this list of 120 One Word Writing Prompts and the use of Google’s Random Number Generator. Number & Coordinated Theme Generated: 104 – Simple.

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