That night, penetrating deep into the heart of Transylvania...
Professor Abronsius was unaware that he was on the point... of reaching the goal of his mysterious investigations.
In the course of which he had journeyed throughout central Europe... accompanied by his one and only faithful disciple, Alfred.
A scholar and scientist whose genius was unappreciated...
Abronsius had given up all to devote himself body and soul... to what was, to him, a sacred mission.
He had even lost his chair at Kurnigsburg University... where for a long time his colleagues used to refer to him as ´´The Nut. ´´
Hurry, hurry! Here!
No, no, over here. Don`t push me!
Not against the stove, because of gangrene!
Hot beer! Hot beer and cinnamon!
Gently. lt will break like glass.
A mustard bath for his feet! His nose as well. His nose as well.
No! Not the nose! Stand him up! Stand him up!
Rebecca! Where is the bikos for the gentlemen, no? lt`s ready, it`s ready!
We drive on a little further until we get to Bubuski....
Now we get to Fulidnish....
Garlic, my boy. Garlic.
Without a doubt.
Here. ls it finished?
Yes, it`s finished. Wait, wait. We don`t go to Brevarsky?
No, no, no. We don`t go to lski?
No, no, not to lski, no.
The whole winter, if need be. lndeed, the summer as well. lt`s a home away from home, no?
Tell me.... l`m telling you!
Listen, you`ve got... The garlic.
Garlic. No, no, no.
What is all the garlic doing here? Where?
Not garlic, professor. Please, not garlic. ls there, by any chance, a castle in the district?
By any chance a castle in the district?
On the word of Yoyneh, there`s no more a castle here than a windmill.
Does anybody here know a windmill in the district?
No? You see? And a castle, anybody know a castle?
There`s a castle just over... You see?
No castle, no windmill. Eat, eat, eat.
The bikos is good. You like? Eat! Look, the little one, he`s eating.
There. You see?
You have the best room in the house. With its own bathroom. Come.
You`ll be very warm, nice, comfortable.
Please, just take a look.
l`d forgotten Sarah! l mean, this bath will be free when this... l promise, it will be free tomorrow.
Use the conveniences in the corridor. Last door on the left.
Good night, gentlemen.
Dear boy! All these signs!
All these signs!
We are nearing our goal at last!
We are nearing our goal!
Last door on the left?
We are nearing our goal.
l told you to stay in your room!
But you always take a bath! No! l`ll give you that bath! l won`t! l won`t, Papa! No! l told you, every day you are having baths! - l won`t! l told you, no bath! No bath! No bath! No bath!
Now you satisfied. Now you got it.
``According to Elibori... they cast no reflected image.
Thus, for example, one cannot see them, nor can they see themselves, in a mirror.
ln a mirror.
Mirror. Nor in any other object serving the same purpose... like water, windowpanes, etcetera.``
What`s next? What`s next?
Someone is walking in the corridor.
Quickly, take them off! Take them off!
What`s my good little fairy up to? What`s she doing?
Your good little fairy is mending your nightshirt.
This nightshirt is mine? No. Yes?
Right, good. lt`s perfect as it is. l`ll try it on. lf you try your nightshirt in my room, l scream.
Forget about the buttons.
That hunchback, Alfred. That hunchback. Did you notice?
Why were you under the table?
l think we have a clue! l want you to follow him.
l am not completely daft, you know. l`m telling you.
Someone last night bashed me on the skull.
l don`t see a bump.
l`m not disturbing you, am l?
Not at all. Not at all. l just don`t know what to do with myself. l get so bored. You can`t imagine how bored l get.
Don`t know. l`m just not used to being locked up the whole time.
You mean you`re always locked up?
At school... we had fun there. We used to skip over the wall.
Did all kinds of things. Yeah?
You know what l mean.
Then Papa.... Don`t know what happened to Papa.
My room is full of garlic.
He says it looks pretty.
Pretty. l brought it back from school. Oh. lt`s a... good one.
Listen. l adore it.
l got into the habit of it at school.
He`s funny, Papa.
You just can`t change your habits in a couple of months, can you?
Besides... it`s good for your hair.
Once a day is the very least. Don`t you agree?
Do you mind if l have a quick one?
l don`t mind at all, but...
Thank you. You`re being very nice.
Could you get me some hot water?
Where are you going? All right, dear, l`m not going!
What about the umbrella?
Are you crazy? l saw him! l saw him! He`s there! There!
Your Excellency! Your Excellency Von Krolock!
Give me back my daughter!
Give her back to me!
Your Excellency! Little Sarah! Excellency!
Shagal, Shagal! My little girl!
Shagal. l beg you!
Careful. Take care. Careful.
They have drained him in the twinkling of an eye.
They are mighty fierce this winter, the beasts.
We ought to organize a beat. Found one in the forest... with his throat ripped!
Now they have taken to devouring each other. Poor Shagal.
To end in the jaws of a wolf. A wolf.
A wolf! You blind wretches!
Open your eyes!
You know perfectly well who has been at work.
You poor victims of your own cowardice!
Stick it where?
Madam Shagal, l have already explained... the body of Mr. Shagal is destroyed, but one can save his soul... by sticking it in.
Sticking it in? Yes.
Where? ln the heart.
According to the works of Elibori and my own research... it is the only way. Like this, in one go.
The works of Elibori. ln whose heart?
Sticking it in... in my Yoyneh`s heart?
Stick in my Yoyneh`s heart?
You hear, Yoyneh?
This swine wants me to stick this shank in your heart!
You stupid old goat!
Stick it?! l`ll stick this...
...right through you, you old fool! l will!
You one-eyed, blind...!
One, two, three!
Great. He`s gone?
Not bad, this little wine.
Have you got the wrong vampire!
There. ln there.
l thought so.
Madam Jackal... Shagal. We must all get down to work.
Of course we shall need your assistance. First we must block up the window.
Good. Good. Next, garlic. Plenty of garlic everywhere.
And some crucifixes. l`ll lend you some.
Tomorrow l will see to the transfusion. ls everything clear? Well, let me repeat.
The garlic, window blocked, crucifixer... here, there, there.
Professor, the other way around. Other way around.
l can feel something soft. Where are you?
Here. lt`s a curtain.
There is a door behind it.
l have a funny feeling we are being watched.
Oh, since you are here, my friend, perhaps you could tell me...
So this is how one worms one`s way into my castle.
Well, to be precise, sir... Count Von Krolock.
``Professor Abronsius. Kurnigsburg University.``
This alters everything. l have had the opportunity of reading your work:
The Bat, its Mysteries.
No, really? Remarkable. l must have a copy somewhere. l would like you to inscribe it for me. l... Well, Your Excellency is too kind.
So you lost your way? No. Actually, we were running after...
You were running after...?
A pteropus. Yes, we were running after a pteropus.
Fancy that. l thought bats fell into a deep sleep throughout the winter months.
Not always, Your Excellency.
Nevertheless, that is what l read in your book.
Precisely, so you can understand the amazement of my assistant and myself.
We could not believe our eyes. lsn`t that so, Alfred?
No, we couldn`t. lt was like... Now, imagine, a chiroptera... flitting about in December? lncredible.
What`s more, it was as big as this. Wasn`t it, Alfred?
Like.... Of course, the case is not unique. ln my second volume, actually at the printer`s... l site several analogous cases supplied to me by reputable colleagues... such as Falkman at Munich, Dr. Athener of Prague.
Curious. Curious, yes, but in no way inexplicable. l think we can look for the cause in the purely mechanical need... to fight against the torpor of hibernation... to restore circulation by primary motion... to cause the vital limbs to work without thinking.
This, in consequence, makes them fly... without being aware of it.
Of course, l only refer to the very rare species... not conforming to the laws of hibernation.
Rather like sleepwalkers?
Let us say, they fly in their sleep. l had an aunt who was a sleepwalker.
At night she frequently ran about on the battlements... without causing me any surprise, because there was actual contact.
But the walking isn`t flying.
How is it possible to avoid an obstacle when flying... while being simultaneously asleep?
Your Excellency is a very great authority.
The natural sciences greatly interested me... when l was a young man.
lt`s at your disposal.
To fly in one`s sleep, you say. How is it possible?
Rays? The rays.
Gentlemen, Koukol informs me that your beds are prepared.
Your Excellency, we have kept you up very late. l`m a night bird. l am not much good in the daytime.
Their little heads contain a fantastic mechanism, sort of....
Anyway, this mechanism emits the rays, the nature of which escapes me... but one thing is absolutely certain, that these rays... come into contact with every obstacle in the way and rebound off that obstacle... back into their little heads and warn them.
That would explain why they can fly in utter darkness.
Herbert, my son.
Good evening. Good evening.
Here is your room. And this one is for you.
What? The rooms... communicate.
Good night, gentlemen.
The fellow is no fool, you know.
Did you hear how he held his own on the subject of the bats?
Really sound arguments.
Not like those morons from Kurnigsburg.
You see, my boy? Yeah.
Aren`t we going to barricade?
No, l don`t think that will be very good tactics. l thought we were going to barricade.
No, the best thing is to sleep with one eye open... or to take the watch in turns.
What is it? What is it?
What are you doing? l`m going to bed.
What has come over you? Go to your own bed.
We can keep the door open.
At the slightest alarm... we call out.
Mr. Koukol, l`m not disturbing a soul here.
There`s plenty of room. People can pass over here.
What are you doing? Where are you taking me?
Mr. Koukol, please.
Mr. Koukol, what are you doing to me, please? l beg of you...
Please, it`s not comfortable here. lt`s dirty here. Look, the day`s coming.
There`s too much light here for me. Mr. Koukol....
So now you are satisfied?
What can you do with such people?
What does it cost? Does it cost him anything?
He should leave me in there. Why does he bring me here?
He`s got a nerve.
A nerve? Von Krolock, he`s brazen.
You remember last night?
``l am a night bird. l am not much good in the daytime.``
That`s what he said. Yeah? So what? lt`s obvious. During the daytime he rests, he reposes.
Reposes? ln the crypt with his fellows.
Maybe there is no crypt in this castle.
Don`t be foolish. A castle without a crypt is like a unicorn without a horn.
You`re not going to start arguing with me like my colleagues from Kurnigsburg?
Oh, first-rate, this bed.
Did you sleep well?
l heard singing.
Well, that`s no reason to look so worried. l`m sure it was Sarah. Sarah, yes.
And who is Sarah? Sarah, Shagal`s daughter.
Oh, yes, of course. l must confess l rather enjoy luxury.
All these years running uphill... and down dale, debating with morons.
Trying to convince a pack of fools.
Oh, and the expense, perpetual expense. l`m sure it was Sarah.
Do you know what that robber Shagal charges us for board and lodging?
Her father? Four dollars, my boy.
Yes, by Jupiter. Four a day.
Bed without breakfast. The ruffian.
Do you feel in good shape, at least? Yes.
We`ve got a lot on our plate. To find Sarah?
Now, keep calm. The crypt comes first.
But what about Sarah? We mustn`t put the cart before the horse.
What`s he up to? He`s woodworking.
But it`s a coffin.
Footprints. She`s dead.
Eureka! Dead. Dead.
Who is dead?
What ``when``? Sarah`s death.
Oh, my God.
Where is she? l don`t know.
What are you driveling about? How can you tell me she`s dead when you don`t know?
The coffin, it`s for her. No, no, no, no. They are still working on it. lf she were dead, she would already be in it like one of them, screened from the light.
She`s not dead? Work it out for yourself.
You may be sure they`ll make her last as long as they can. lt`s their idea of fun. ln that case, who is the coffin for?
Oh, for her or....
Don`t look at him. Behave naturally.
Recite for me the 1 2 signs of the Zodiac.
Gemini, Cancer, White Boar.
What are you talking about?
This lout guards the crypt like a Cerberus.
We must think of a stratagem.
Just whistle as if nothing has happened and let`s turn back.
Not so fast.
You`ll have to help me, my boy.
l can`t get a grip.
You will have to operate on your own.
Operate on my own? Yes.
What has to be done?
The stakes, my boy.
These stakes? What other stakes could there be?
They must be driven in.
By me? They`re not going to drive in on their own!
Not that, master. Please, not that. Come on, my boy, show some guts! l`m here.
First you must remove the lids.
Oh, Mama. Remove the lids? lt`s an order.
Open it, for heaven`s sake!
l can`t, master.
For the sake of Shagal`s daughter, open it!
Open your eyes.
Open your eyes!
Who is it?
His Excellency. Good.
Now, the other one.
And this one?
His Excellency`s son.
And what? Shagal!
Very well. Open the case.
Pick up a stake... and a hammer.
Now... go do the count.
Search for the right spot, in between the seventh and eighth on the left. Don`t forget.
Place the stake over the spot.
Raise the hammer... and... strike!
Oh, mutiny, is it? l will take an oath if there is mutiny.
Come on, my baby. Hit.
There`s a good little scout.
Are you going to hit it or not, you good for nothing...
Everything back in the case. lt`s no use.
You will have to pull me out. From the other side, dumbbell!
Mind he doesn`t catch you.
Sarah! lt`s you!
l`m going to save you. We`ll go away together.
Where do you want us to go? l don`t know. To your parents`, perhaps.
They said Papa will be coming to see me soon.
They said that?
Yes. You... You`ve seen my dress?
Beautiful, isn`t it?
They gave it to me for the ball tonight.
The midnight ball.
This evening, here? A ball?
They`ll all be there.
But we can still have a dance together, you know?
Sarah, you must follow me.
Follow you? l beseech you.
Well, tomorrow, perhaps.
But tomorrow will be too late.
May l turn around?
My head is swimming around.
l`m no longer the age for this sort of activity.
Look! How wonderful nature is.
The sun is setting. Glorious! Magnificent!
The sun is setting and they are going to rise. lt`s in the order of things.
Oh, what a pity not to have the time.
Once l get stuck into it, l am engulfed for a week!
This way, master.
Here is Orion!
And here is Saturn, with its ring!
Come. Come and have a look, my boy. There it is.
Courage, my good woman, courage.
Bless my soul.
Shiver my timbers!
Unless they barricade thoroughly.... l know what l am talking about...
Are you ill?
How pale he is! l`m not pale.
Yes, you are. Yes, you are. l assure you.
You are as white as a sheet.
No! Yes, Alfred.
You must have a rest.
Have a little rest and you`ll feel much, much better. l don`t like to see you in this state.
There, now. Feeling better? lsn`t there a ball tonight?
How long they are.
They look like golden threads.
Who told you there`s going to be a ball tonight?
Nobody. l`m just guessing.
With a great castle like this, it`s possible.
He`s just guessing. But it`s true.
You`ve guessed correctly with your pretty head.
Yes, Alfred, there`s going to be a ball, and you will be able to dance.
What is it you`re clutching there like a little treasure?
Here. Show me.
Alfred, show me.
So that`s the big secret.
Somebody is in love.
Somebody`s little heart is beating around in their bosom.
Pitter-pat, pitter-pat, pitter-pat, like a rat in a cage.
Place the left arm around the shoulders of the loved one.
Put the left hand on her left shoulder... like a little birdie alighting on a branch.``
``Then let an angel pass.``
Shall we allow an angel to pass?
``Once the angel has passed... bend the face towards the locks of the loved one... and brush them with the lips.``
Close the door!
Playing games? Close the door!
He went berserk. Did you provoke him or what?
He got excited all on his own. On his own. On his own.
Oh, l meant to tell you... What?
Elibori`s theory is correct. Which one?
The one to do with the reflections. ln the mirror. l was... Explain yourself more clearly. l was in front of a mirror, sitting on the edge of a bed and....
And, well, l was alone... yet he was by my side, but nothing from him.
No reflection. Nothing. Blank.
Not even his clothes? Not even his shirt. l`d love to have seen that.
One doesn`t see a thing.
You found something to eat? l? No.
There is a smell of garlic sausage.
l`m frightened. lt`s quite impressive.
You think they are all...? Undoubtedly!
Oh, my God. You should never have come here.
So why did we come? Ask the professor.
Oh, so you`re here. You`re here. lf you have no objection, l`m not hibernating.
You don`t seem very pleased. l am surprised.
Keep your surprise for later on, you`ll need it.
You didn`t foresee this in your second volume, still at the printer`s. lt will be my pleasure to fill in the gaps in your learning.
When you attain my spiritual level... we shall then have the long winter evenings before us for our discussions.
The long evenings... of many winters.
Your young assistant will make an excellent companion for my son.
He`s already quite fond of him.
He`s told me so. He`s a gentle... sensitive youth. ln the course of the centuries, they`ll learn to know each other better... just as we shall.
As brooks flow into streams, streams into rivers... and rivers into the sea... so our adepts flow back to us and swell our ranks.
Soon we shall be victorious and triumphant!
We shall then hold sway over this Earth... which awaits our coming as autumn awaits winter.
Look at him, almost an old man... with his flabby stomach and spindly legs... bring, with dog-like devotion, a fresh adept... who only a few nights ago was under his protection.
Look well at this man who secreted another girl more closely...
...than a miser hoarding his gold. Sarah!
But tonight he`s happy. See how he frisks and capers.
l must leave you now.
See you later, gentlemen.
Meditate while awaiting your turn... for it would be extremely difficult for you to get away from here.
Unless, of course, you have wings.
Like a bat.
He displeased me as much this evening as he impressed me the first time.
What they deserve is... a good cannonball right in the...
Quick, help me turn it around!
A little more.
Would you mind giving me a hand? Good.
Put the wood under the cannon!
Under the cannon, under the cannon.
Takes me for a nincompoop. That necrophile.
A year ago....
A year ago, exactly on this same night, we were assembled here in this very room. l, your pastor, and you, my beloved flock.
With hopefulness in my heart, l told you then... that with Lucifer`s aid we might look forward to a more succulent occasion.
Cast back your minds.
There we were, gathered together, gloomy and despondent... around that single meager woodcutter.
A year has elapsed... and although travelers turn up more and more seldom in these parts... in spite of this, l have this evening a great... a wonderful surprise for you!
Dearly beloved brethren... come closer.
This isn`t all.
This isn`t all!
Yet another human is at this very moment being groomed.
Two more humans are in our hands!
Go on, go on. Have your bath now.
Then turn your back to me.
All those ladies and gentlemen are awaiting you. Listen!
Listen to the music.
Come on, take it off!
Don´t you look. I´m not looking, I´m not looking.
Will I be seeing His Excellency? Yes, you´ll see His Excellency.
It´s for me, this lovely dress?
Yeah, for you, this lovely dress. And so are the shoes.
I wonder what His Excellency´s like.
Look here, what are you doing? Oh, no!
Now, listen, I´m old enough to be your... I´m still your boss, my girl.
If you do that again, I´m telling His Excellency.
Forget your precious Excellency a minute. Shagal!
What? Who spoke?
Who is speaking, who?
How dare you ask questions, you letch!
Please! Forgive me! l didn`t mean to ask questions. You understand. Thank you.
Have you unhitched the horse?
Horse? Oy. l`ll go. l`ll go at once! l`ll need it harnessed, you idiot!
Oh, and Shagal, about that girl.... Yeah?
Don´t you touch her again! l`m not touching! Who`s touching?
You`re pulling my leg.
You wouldn`t do a thing like that to Yoyneh.
Hey. Answer me.
lf they had listened to me, all this would never have happened.
Can`t we do anything for her?
She`s one of them already.
Quick, professor, quick!
That damned case.
Why did you have to lose it?
lt is l.
Life has a meaning once more.
We are going to save you.
You spoke to her?
l had a word with her.
After a good transfusion...
and a few days` rest, you will be as right as rain, my child.
We`ve got a congress in Venice.
The palaces, the sky. Venice, Sarah, Venice.
The gondolas. The sun. The sea.
At the next turn, we make for the door.
Light. Life. Love. When l say ``hop, `` we make for the door...
...and run for it. Our love.
Snatch the girl from them!
Sharpen your teeth!
l`ve never come across such remarkable specimens.
We haven`t got the time! l would have to examine them in detail... but here and now l can assert we are dealing with Pteropus Poliocephalus.
We haven`t got the time.
Go. One, two, three, four. Good.
Go! Go, Koukol, go!
Give them a little hell, fire and blood!
Go! Catch them!
Go on, sleep.
Your tiny hand. lt`s frozen.
Tiny hand is....
l thought that....
My little hand, my pretty hand. Soon l will be sleeping...
That night, fleeing from Transylvania, Professor Abronsius never guessed... he was carrying away with him the very evil he had wished to destroy.
Thanks to him, this evil would at last be able to spread across the world.