Staff Vampire Writer
Maybe you didn’t want to visit the Carpathian Mountains. However, you have no choice. I’m Count Dracula and you’re under my spell.
These are the real Carpathian Mountains, not the ones in the human world. Our mountains make those sissy ones in the human world look like Pike’s Peak. And be prepared -- we have all kinds of fun things to do here in this dark, secluded, remote region.
Let’s begin with your itinerary. I have your entire trip planned out, but there’s no need to write it down -- you’ll obey.
Here’s how you’ll be getting to my castle: My carriage service, Carpathian Transpo and Bat-Guided Tours, will pick you up at the base of the mountains in the Village Ang Ree. Don’t let any of the angry villagers talk you out of taking the trip. No worries, my spell on you is strong.
Hop aboard one of my many luxurious, suspensionless carriages, and let my winged-friends take you through the twisting, turning, rocky, bumpy-as-all-get-out paths up into the Carpathian Mountains and Castle Dracula, probably the coolest place in the history of everything ever.
On your way up, you’ll pass through Blood Country. Maybe I’ll have your carriage stop off at the Blood Country Veinyard for a glass of our famous Pinot AB+.
With more than four main blood groups (including those of undocumented monsters) produced in a state-of-the-art blood-gathering facility, the Blood Country Veinyard offers the widest variety of premium blood.
Enjoy your plasma in the cellars with all the rats, possums and large bugs scurrying about from nook to cranny. Have lunch there. They serve everything from linguini with “red” sauce to Artie Choke heart salads (Artie gets his hearts from only the freshest corpses).
Once your back in the carriage and you’ve passed the Vampire Catacombs (we’ll see that later), you’re almost to my castle. If you missed out on souvenirs at the Village Ang Ree or the Blood Country Veinyard, you might want to signal your driver to stop off at Hounds of Hell Crossing.
That’s the last spot for goodies before my castle, and they have all kinds of Drac trinkets, shirts that read, “I Partied With Drac And I Got This Shirt, Too,” pentagram necklaces and Children of the Night CDs. You can even wrestle around with some of the canines that run rampant there.
Then get back in the carriage and . . . I almost forgot -- just before crossing the canyon, you may hear some loud, bass-heavy music coming from a citadel far off the trail. That’s the Palace of the Princess of Darkness. You can go there if you want. I won’t stop you. But make it snappy. And be warned, the Princess and I are not on speaking terms at the moment.
It’s a long story. She actually thinks Val Kilmer was the best Batman. I know -- really? Michael Keaton was much more popular and he was more swashbuckling. Look it up, you’ll see more people feel as I do.
Obviously, in real life, we all know who the real bat man is. I don’t even have to say it.
OK, it’s me.
But Michael Keaton is the next best one. Adam West was pretty darn good, too.
Anyway, try not to stay too long. You don't even want to get started with the Princess's Husbands. They think they know it all. But once you’re done at the Palace, get back in the carriage and you’re on your way to Castle Dracula, at last.
You’ll cross through the Courtyard of Wolves and into a wall of flame (it’s really a doorway) . . .
And then you’re here! It’s time to fang out with your pal Drac.
This is one in a series of TRAVEL STORIES from the 13 districts of Transyl-vein-ia. These stories run weekdays between August and September. Jack-o’-Lantern Press’s regular news and entertainment coverage will continue in October.