“I remember the first time I saw a Vampire. Mind you, I was just a little girl. There is was, right out in public, in a beautifully tailored navy blue suit, and wearing round tortious shell sunglasses. It was all topped off with a fedora, and bottomed off with Chuck Taylors. Can you imagine? Nobody in their right mind except a Vampire would have worn Chuck’s with an expensive suit like that. Now maybe, but not then. This was 1948. If you dressed creatively you either had to be breaking the law, or a Vampire.”
“How’d you know he was a Vampire Grammy?” Austin asked is grandma.
“The same way you know. I had a sudden urge to kill him. Mind you, I wanted to run. I could feel the coldness radiating out of him. I could sense he could smell my blood. Then he turned and smiled at me, flashing just a bright bit of white fang, and he mouthed the words go home little girl. But even though no sound came out of him, I could hear his voice in my head. The know they way they get into your head and look around for things that aren’t none of their business”
“Did you go home?”
“Hell no. We were on our way to the movies. I didn’t want to miss Oliver Twist.”
“Yes it was. My dad saw the Vampire too and held my hand like a vice. Later that night, after the movie, he told me that the Vampire we saw was one of the good ones. They weren’t really good, but they were not the kind we hunted. I was only six at the time so there was a lot of it I didn’t understand. Later I learned about the undead shadow creepers, and the rest of the unsavory creepy lot.”
“Did you ever see that Vampire again?”
“I sure did. You know him.”
“That damn attorney who hires you to do his dirty work for him. Aaron, what’s his name. Come to find out he was just a few years shy of his 100th birthday.”
“But he used to hire you Grammy.”
“Sometimes. The money was good and I still kick myself for doing it. I never liked hiring myself out the the enemy, but it wasn’t all bad. I learned a lot about them. Hold your enemies close, but not too close. That rule counts double if they’re Vampires.”
“I’m going to see Aaron tomorrow.”
“Well, don’t tell him we were talking about him.”
“My lips are sealed.”
“Good. Just don’t let some Vampire get out his needle and thread and stitch them for you. Yes, that happens. They’re a horrible lot of fuckers those Vampires are.”
“Needle and thread? Really?”
“I’ve seen it myself. Now enough of this Vampire talk. Let’s get some donuts. I’m hankering for a bear claw, and a couple of old fashioneds, and coffee too.”
“Sounds good to me Grammy.”
As they went off to get donuts, Aaron smiled, thinking about the family of Vampire Hunters he’d been dealing with over the years. Yes, they were talking about him this morning. He always knew when they were talking about him.
Donuts. That was something he’d always wanted to enjoy but eating even a donut hole would make him sick. Oh well. At least he could drink coffee. It always helped take off the cold edge of the morning and the painful glare sun.