Short Story Sunday: A Mysterious Stranger on a Hot Dry Day

Standing on the hill among the wind swept oaks blanked with mist from the lake she imagined herself in a billowing skirt, hair blowing in the wind, romance in the air. She was in a Gothic novel. She was transported to another time, another place, another life…

“Rex,” she called out to the old dog of unknown breed. The large black dog continued to sniff the dry grass. “God damn it Rex. You’re going to get fox tails up your nose.”

Leash in her hand she made her way down to the dog. The billowing skirts and romance was gone  as the middle aged woman in crop pants and a baggy tee shirt grabbed her dog by the collar and gently nudged him out of the weeds.

She pulled her should length hair back with an elastic tie to keep the sweat off of her neck. What a beautiful day for a walk despite the heat.

Woman and dog made their way up the hill. They stopped above the lake and watched down on the rowing teams below.

A sudden cold breeze felt so good. Cold turned to ice and she turned around to see him standing there.

“Kristen, dear lady.”

The man wore clothes of the 1850’s. His hat was in his hand, his hair ruffled by the breeze. A smile was on his handsome and distinguished face.

Rex perked up and wagged his tail.

“Uh, hi. Do I know you?” Kristen felt the chill again and thought of running, but knew she’d slip on the steep rocky trail.

The man smiled. “Not yet. Or at least not in flesh and blood.”

“Who are you? What are you doing here?”

“We will meet again soon. Until then…” and he kissed her.

“Wait. Are you a ghost?”

“Look at the boats,” he said.

She turned to look at the lake and the air turned hot again. He’d vanished.

Leaning against a tree she caught her breath. Glancing at her own hand on the rough bark she  noticed the chipped pink fingernail polish and blue veins. The sun caught her wedding ring making the gold sparkle and shine bright.

“If I lived back in his time I’d probably be dead by now,” she told Rex. “So would you.”

As she walked home her heart pounded, almost in a panic. Then excitement. Was he a ghost? Was he in a time warp of some kind? Was he real? Would he come back?

She didn’t know and maybe never would. Then again, maybe he would.

 

Tangled Tales

 

 

Quiz Time: What kind of friend are you (even if you’re a Vampire)

Answer the questions. Tally the Scores (1-4, add em up.) Find out what kind of friend you are.

 

Your friend tells you he has become a Vampire. He wants to talk about it. What do you do?

1. Sit down with him and quietly discuss the issue. You’re there for your friend.

2. Tell him that he has to get HELP NOW.

3. Run.

4. Drive a wooden stake through his heart and cut off his head.

 

Your friend tells you she has become a Werewolf. What do you do?

1. Sit down and discuss the matter with sensitivity. Let her know she can trust you.

2. Give her a box of dog biscuits.

3. Call Animal Control.

4. Shoot her through the heart with a silver bullet.

 

You are at a bar with your Vampire friends. Two of you see the same guy with type A+ blood. Your friend is really hungry, but this guy is really cute. What do you do?

1. Let your friend have him. There are a lot of cute guys with A+ blood out there.

2. Share him with your friend.

3. Tell your friend that you saw him first.

4. Tell your friend that she is a loser with fat thighs. Then drain the guy of blood so NOTHING is left for your loser friend.

 

You are walking in a dark alley with your friend and suddenly a dozen Zombies come shuffling towards you. What do you do?

1. Tell your friend to run, then fight off the Zombies with your portable flame thrower.

2. Grab your friend by the hand and run.

3. Tell your friend everyone knows he is an idiot so he doesn’t need to worry (no brain, ha ha ha ha.)

4. Push your friend into the oncoming Zombies and watch as they eat his brains, rip his skin off and gnaw his bones.

 

Your friend shows up at a party wearing the same dress as you. What do you do?

1. Gently giggle, then go home and change.

2. Laugh and pretend you’re twins all night.

3. Spill wine down the front of her dress so she’ll have to go change.

4. Call her a bitch and tell her to stop copying you. Then smack her as hard as you can and kick her shins.

 

Your friend has a baby who looks like a Goblin. What do you do.

1. Tell her that the baby is beautiful.

2. Tell her the baby is smart and alert.

3. Shrink back in horror and then excuse yourself.

4. Tell her it is the ugliest baby you’ve ever seen and laugh in her face.

 

You’re at a party and Vlad the Vampire Prince shows up. Your friend is smitten. You know Vlad is bad news. What do you do?

1. Gently tell your friend that Vlad is bad news and her reputation as a woman and a Vampire would be ruined should she pursue him.

2. Tell her bad things about Vlad.

3. Kick Vlad’s Vampire ass and tell him to stay away from your friend.

4. Find Vlad and screw him silly. Then brag about it to your friend.

 

Your friend is writing a paranormal romance novel about a Vampire and a Werewolf who fall in love and open a smoothie shop. You read it. It is poorly written and confusing. What do you do?

1. Tell her to keep writing and follow her dream.

2. Suggest she find beta readers and a good editor.

3. Tell her it just isn’t your thing.

4. Tell her that the book sucks and that she is stupid to even think about writing and has absolutely no talent. Then smack her across the face and break her pencil. Make her cry.

 

Score:

Add of the numbers of the questions you picked (1,2,3 or 4.) Check the answers below.

Score: 8

Either you’re a saint or you’re a compulsive liar. Either way NOBODY is going to want to be around you.

Score: 9-12

You care a lot about your friends but sometimes you let them walk all over you. Don’t let your friends take advantage of you. You are a true and loyal friend – make sure your friends are true and loyal too.

Score: 13-17

You’re a lot of fun to be with. I’d go shopping and out to lunch with you.

Score: 18-20

You’re a good friend but sometimes you can be an asshole. Cut it out.

Score: 21-25

You might consider getting counseling. You enjoy the company of others but sometimes you don’t think before you speak or act.

Score: 25-29

I’ve dated guys like you. Go back to your crypt and grow up.

Score: 30-31

HA HA HA HA. Really?

Score: 32

You’re a horrible person.

 

The fact that he always brought his brothers and their tiny chairs along on dates should have clued me in on just how weird he was.

The fact that he always brought his brothers and their tiny chairs along on dates should have clued me in on just how weird he was.

 

I hope you had fun doing this quiz. I hope you found out something you didn’t know about your friendship style.

~ Your friend (who’d never kick you in the shin.)

Juliette aka Vampire Maman

 

Vampire mom

 

 

 

 

 

Vampire Diary: Embroiled in a Dream (and still cute)

Dear Diary,

The cat asked to go out tonight. I told her no. She cursed my soul with a horrible wail. I told her I wasn’t sure I have a soul. She then hissed at me and ran away.

An hour later she crawled in my lap and purred.

I do not understand this creature.

~ Vlad

_____________________

Dear Diary,

Tonight I would hunt and take the night as the Vampire Lord.

As I walked down the street, past strands of twinkling white lights hanging in the windows and trees, I observed bars and other businesses are full of people who mingle and talk.

At one time people bowed down to me as I passed due to my power and fear. Now women smile and giggle and tell me I am cute. Cute?

As a former Vampire King I do not have to depend on “cute” to find my prey.

I set my eyes on a young woman. I lock eyes with her and she comes to me. She is mine.

A cold hand grabs my shoulder just enough for me to turn.

There stands a man, another Vampire. He has the audacity to stop and speak to me.

“She’s mine. I’m her Vampire,” he says to me.

“Yours?”

“I’m her Vampire. You know, man. I am her Vampire. There are plenty of women here. You’re scary attractive. Take your pick, but don’t take my ladies.”

“Scary attractive?” I didn’t see anyone running away or hear screaming.

“Dude. You’re perfect. You have that California blonde beach guy look. Women love that.”

I had no idea what he was talking about. “What do you know of being a Vampire?” I asked.

“I was born this way,” he said almost in a whisper. The look on his face changed almost to recognition. Then he whispered a swear word under his breath and took the woman (who did not hear us) by the arm. “Come on Lilly. I want to show you something.”

I stood with rage in my heart, but never showed emotion on my face.

In the back office I nearly drained an attractive bartender of blood. In the days of my past glory I would have just left her, but instead I called the pub manager to say the poor girl had fainted. Oh how things have changed. I would have killed her in the past but now Vampires see humans as renewable resources.

My completion was one of the rare offspring of our kind. They scare me in their urge to mingle with humankind. They have no respect for the traditions of old. I do not understand them.

~ Vlad

_______________________

Dear Diary,

I was embroiled in a dream of a living man. I was alive again. Warm blood surged through my veins. Warm flesh covered my bones. I raised my hands up to the sunlight and laughed. My hair was bleached almost white from the summer sun on the water. Suddenly something rough slid across my face…

I woke in a panic.

The cat was licking my face.

Gillian smiled at my expense. My own Vampire lover had come to my bed earlier in the night.

Putting my hand to her cheek I asked, “Do you remember when you turned into a Vampire?”

“Of course. Nobody ever forgets.”

“How old were you?”

“Seventeen. And you my love?”

“Twenty. It was the eve of my marriage to a princess.”

“You didn’t marry her did you?”

“No. years later I married a Vampire. It was 1623. But that was a long time ago.”

“I remember. I didn’t know you then but everyone was talking about it.”

Then I told Gillian about the Vampire I’d met the night before.

She sat up in bed and stared at me.

“What? Do you think I’m cute too?”

Gillain’s eyes narrowed. “You were married to his Grandmother. She is going to be so pissed when she finds out you’re in town.”

I should have stayed in Europe but the castle is only rubble and there is no place for a Vampire King.

~ Vlad

____________________

Dear Diary,

I have brooded for three nights. Gillian became angered and left. I can’t find my cat.

~ Vlad

______________________

Dear Diary,

The doorbell rang. I went to answer. Standing on my front porch was a small child holding my cat.

“This is your cat,” said the small child.

I could smell her blood. I put my hand on the edge of the door so I wouldn’t fall over. I realized I hadn’t eaten in days.

I took the purring cat from the child’s arms. “Thank you dear child.” Out of my pocket I pulled an ancient coin from my old country. I put it in her small hand and closed her fingers around it.”

The tiny girl looked at the coin with a face of a king on one side and a raven on the other. Then she looked up at me. “The man on the coin looks like you.”

At one time that coin, a simple copper  and silver disc, would bring fear into the heart of a living man. Now it brought delight to the eyes of a child.

I smiled and thanked for again for bringing back the cat. I watched her walk down my walkway then the child turned and grinned, then said, “my mom thinks you’re cute.”

More cute? I just don’t understand.

~ Vlad

blue cat

Culture Shock

Culture Shock: A Discussion with Vampires and Werewolves

Sometime late this summer my son Garrett will move up from the dorms into a small house with three other college students. Two are like him. One is not like him.

It isn’t as if I have a problem with that. Three out of four of my daughter’s best friends are gay or undecided. The come in a variety of skin colors and sizes. They’re all cute and all Vampires and all smart so of course they’re friends. I love all of them just how they are.

Garrett’s future roommate is a little more complicated. She isn’t a Vampire. She isn’t a normal person (you know what I mean.) She is a Werewolf. At the tender age of sixteen some asshole bit her and turned her into a highly contagious dog-girl who howls at the moon. I know why her parents are so upset. So is her uncle. Her uncle is a Vampire. He is a Vampire of his own choice.

Yesterday the uncle, a guy named Jeremy (same name as my dad) called and asked if we could meet. He and Bailey were coming up from the Bay Area for the day and thought it would be a good idea to meet.

I could tell Jeremy was a success as a Vampire right away. He had the calm confidence of our kind, but also gave off the vibe of being hyper aware of his surroundings. Nobody else would have know this sandy haired guy with a warm smile and bright blue eyes was a blood sucking creature of the shadows.

He said Bailey had dropped him off and would be back shortly.

I poured a few glasses of chilled spiced blood and we sat on the deck.

“What happened to the Werewolf who attacked Bailey?” I had to ask.

Jeremy’s mouth set in a grim stance. “She was put down.”

“Any reproductions from the Werewolf community?”

“They know the rules. If Bailey had become anything it should have been a Vampire, not a damned Werewolf.” He paused trying to gather his words. “It hit Bailey hard. She knew I was different, but she had no idea. This was all fiction to her before she changed. The Werewolves have been no help at all, at least none that I know.”

Culture shock is hard on a teen, not to mention the physical changes when becoming, for better terms, something else. There are feelings of sadness, loss, anger and fear. They wonder if they’ll be able to live among people unlike themselves. They fear someone will find out. On the flip side some see it as an opportunity and have fun exploring their new life and meeting others like themselves. Unfortunately there are not always a lot of folks like them. Vampires are rare and Werewolves are  even more rare.

“We have friends who are Werewolves. They’re kind of out of the dark dog culture but they have their own support system. They’re cool.”

“Garrett told her about them. I guess he has friends who are Werewolves.”

I could hear my old dog yelping her happy somebody-is-here song.

Bailey wasn’t what I expected. I don’t know why I expected some dark eyed waif with a heroine chic look. She was about 5′ 8″, wearing jeans, a flowered pink camisole style shirt and bright pink Vans. Her pixie style hair and eyes were the same color as Jeremy’s.

“Wow, you’re Garrett’s mom. You look so young,” she said.

I was charmed. “I’ll tell you a secret. I’m 155.”

Both Bailey and Garrett looked surprised. Oh well. We talked for a few hours until I had to pick Clara up from the high school.

As I drove up to the school I could see two older boys, graduating seniors walking along and laughing as teenage boys do. They were two of the dozen Vampires at the school. Just typical kids with big time family secrets.

Bailey had mentioned that she’d dropped out of high school after she’d been turned into a Werewolf and homeschooled for her last year. Everyone assumed it was from her injuries. They were partially right. The boys I was watching were born into Vampire families. It was safe for them. There was nothing to be scared of. For Bailey there was everything to be scared of.

I told Bailey that Garrett, his best buddy Randy and their other roomie would watch out for her and help her navigate her new world as a young adult. I hope I’m right. They’re still learning. But like Randy’s mom and I have discussed – our kids are also good about learning from their mistakes.

When we look at people who are different, either by culture or other differences, we have to give them a break. At the same time when we are surrounded by people who are different it is a good time to learn something new. It is a good time to get out of your own skin and experience something different. It is a time to share. Not always, but take the positive.

Of course being a Werewolf is just plain creepy in my book. I look down at my own hands on the keyboard and can’t even imagine growing claws and dark brown thick hair on them.

My friend Adam once told me that he wished he could take a full moon off and walk through the night as a man, and not a wolf. He said it would be nice not to smell blood (I beg to differ for obvious reasons.)

Being the odd one out is difficult. I know how that feels. My wish is that Bailey and others like her don’t feel it so much. My wish is that they don’t feel it at all.

 

 

~ Juliette aka Vampire Maman

 

beach time

 

 

 

 

 

The Eagle Cried

For Memorial Day – A poem from Rick Turton.
Note: Rick is usually making everyone laugh. He is awesome that way. But here he makes us think and remember and maybe even cry. Thank you Rick, again, for your moving words.

Vampire Maman

I’m honored to share a poem from my friend, Northern California writer Richard Turton.

eagle

The Eagle Cried

The acrid smell of cordite

Still hovered in the air.

No breeze to wash away

The scent of Satan’s hair.

The Medivac’s are fading now,

Their cabins filled with dead.

So many grisly pictures

Are surging through my head

Another hill’s been taken

The earth all charred and black

We all know what’s coming;

Tomorrow…”Give it back!”

The Eagle cries from barren trees

His tears, he cannot hide.

Where once a proud, young soldier stood

My Warrior Brother, died

The scorched ground that surrounds me;

Am I in Dante’s Hell?

This skirmish now is over

We saw them as they fell.

My Warrior Brother, Donny,

Died that gruesome day.

He took the bullets meant for me

With his final words did say,

“Tell Mom and Sis I loved them!

Please! Don’t let me…

View original post 757 more words

Short Story Sunday: A Mystery

Through the window the trees started to appear in the first light of the day.

“You’ve been writing for days on end without sleep. You need to rest.”

Charlotte looked up at the old man. He’d been her faithful servant for the past fifty years. Yet, she still looked no more than twenty-five.

She smiled and put her hand lightly on his arm. “Dear Jones I am fine. Is Alex still here?”

Jones looked surprised. “Of course. I believe he might still be asleep.”

She neglected him for her attempt in figuring out the mysterious events of three nights ago.

It was the night of the Summer Ball. She’d come in a turquoise blue gown. All eyes were on her. But then she was him standing across the room. He walked to her then reached out his hand to her. His cold hand melted her heart. They danced all night then together found blood.

They laughed at how the silly couple they’d fed on didn’t even know what had happened. Oh how people at parties think it is the alcohol and never even guess it was an encounter with a Vampire.

Later they sat close together, under the stars, talking of everything one could imagine. He came home with her.

She woke in the middle of the day, her heart pounding, her blood temperature rising, her breath short and a sense of panic.

Alex lay still as death and just as cold with a sweet smile on his sleeping face. As she gazed upon his beautiful peaceful face she feared for his safety.

Getting out of bed she grabbed her robe and looked around the house for intruders. A cold flush came over her. Was it ghosts? Were there intruders? Had Vampire Hunters finally been sent after them?

Grabbing up her dress, that was by the front door where she’d dropped it in the heat of passion the night before, she noticed a small stain on the front. It was blood. Was she getting sloppy? Was there something she forgot the night before?

Now she sat in her library, trying to figure it all out. What were these vibrations, these premonitions, these signs leading to?

She looked back up at James. “I can’t figure out what is going on. Why do I feel this sense of mystery and…. I don’t know what…there is nothing in the texts for this?”

James laughed out loud and James rarely laughed in the presence of Charlotte. He closed all of the books and took the pen out of Charlotte’s cold pale hand.

“For someone who has been around for so long sometimes you amaze me. You’re in love Charlotte.”

She put a hand on her chest and felt a faint low beat of her heart. “But…”

The door cracked open and Alex slipped in. James smiled and left the room.

Charlotte put her head on Alex’s cold heart. He put his arms around her and whispered, “I love you Charlotte. I always have.” And she knew this would only be the beginning of the mystery to come.

Kissed by a Vampire

~ Juliette aka Vampire Maman (who wrote this story while at a roller skating meet this morning.)