Short Story Sunday: Motorhome

Motorhome
An Austin and Elizabeth Story

Austin grew up knowing that Grammy didn’t have many filters. She’d say anything she wanted to anyone. Austin’s mother said Grammy had always been rude. Grammy said she was giving out good advice that might make people want to do something about their situations. Everyone was in a situation so everyone was told what they needed to do.

Grammy’s caretaker, a lovely woman named Kayla, had texted Austin the following:

“Just a warning, Grammy is in a mood today. Completely speaking with no filter. We talked to Tom across the street. Grammy asked how they were doing and before he could say anything she said, “well it looks like you and your wife have completely given up on loosing weight.” I nudged her in hopes she would stop but it didn’t work. She then went on to say, “I thought you guys were dieting. Looked like you’ve completely given up on losing weight. Tom was so red embarrassed. I said he is healthy and happy and always smiling, so I told him to have a nice day and closed the door before Grammy could say anything else. I then said “OMG Grammy u can’t ever tell people that they are overweight. Ever. Men or women. It is not to be discussed. Don’t tell women they look pregnant. None of it. She said “Well maybe if I say something that will make them want to lose weight.” I said, “NO. NO. NO. Nothing you say will change them. You’re just being terrible at that point. No more ever.” Grammy’s mind is in it’s own place sometimes. Tomorrow is a new day. I told her she is the cutest sweetest little Grammy in the world. She has to stop thinking and saying such negative things.”

Austin was mortified. Tom had been a good friend for years, and would do anything for Grammy. But sweet little Grammy had a dark suspicious side. She’d grown up in the Deep South where people generally have fewer filters than those from other regions of the country. She’d also grown up in a family of Vampire Hunters. It was in their blood, no pun intended.

When Austin arrived at Grammy’s house he wondered who the old motor home in the driveway belonged to.

Kayla, a rail thin brown haired, blue eyed woman in her forties came out to meet him. She and her college student son Colt live with Grammy and took care of her in her great big family home. At one time Austin had tried to get Grammy to sell her house and move into a smaller house in his neighborhood, just three houses down from him, but she’d have none of it. She’d rather complain about money and upkeep than move out of the house she’d lived in for sixty-two years.

“Is someone visiting?” Austin looked toward the motor home.

“I bought that last week. I’m going to take Grammy on a road trip.”

It was a small 1981 motor home complete with faded orange and red stripes on the outside.

“Wow, look at this thing,” said Austin.

“Come inside. Take a look,” said Kayla inviting him in through the back door.

Grammy was sitting on an orange couch that could fold out into a double bed. There was a table, a small kitchen, four captain’s chairs, and a tiny bathroom complete with a toilet, sink, and a shower.

“Hey, Grammy,” Austin said bending down to kiss her.

Grammy was small, and still quite pretty for an eighty eight year old lady. Her white hair had been done up the day before with pink foam curlers. She wore bright pink lipstick, a pink flowered shirt, and matching pink pants.

Grammy took his hands, “Austin. What do you think of our new castle on wheels?”

“Great,” said Austin. “The orange and red carpet is pretty ugly, but otherwise it’s great.”

“I don’t see any problems with the carpet. It looks almost new to me,” said Grammy. “Now, Austin, are you still seeing that Vampire girl?”

Austin was in love with a woman who just happened to be a Vampire. He knew it wasn’t exactly the right thing to do but…

“But,” he said, “Grammy, Elizabeth isn’t a shadow creeper, or one of those ghoulish undead types. She lives a pretty normal life. You know the kinds of Vampires I help get rid of, and Elizabeth isn’t one of them.”

“You know those Vampires aren’t right. They do nothing but cause problems. Austin you’re an idiot for getting involved with one.”

“Grammy, Elizabeth isn’t that different from us.”

“That’s what you say. But the next thing you know they’ll be coming out of the shadows. I bet you the first thing they’ll do is call the ACLU and get a bunch of lawsuits in place against us normal people asking for rights and then some. Then they call AARP because they’re all older than dirt. You can’t trust them Austin. Listen to me. You are going to have nothing but trouble ahead of you. Nothing but trouble.”

“OK Grammy, I get your point.”

“I hope so. I don’t want you marrying one of those things. You haven’t have sexual intercourse with that Vampire of yours yet have you?”

“Grammy, I’m not going to talk about this anymore.”

“Are you still killing Vampires?”

“Only the ones without souls.”

“Well, how do you know if they have souls? They’re all a bunch of fanged faced liars.”

“Grammy, I know. I’m a Vampire Hunter. I can tell. It’s in my blood.”

“Well, your blood will be their blood if you don’t watch out.”

Kayla, who’d gone inside to make iced tea, came back out with three tall cold glasses full of iced tea with fresh mint. This wasn’t the popular sweet tea, but strong freshly brewed black tea with just a hint of lemon and mint. Grammy wouldn’t allow anyone to ruin her good tea with the addition of sugar.

Grammy took a sip of her tea and said, “I don’t know why your mom and dad had to name you after a city.”

Kayla smiled. “Be nice Grammy. You know Austin was where they fell in love.”

“Well, maybe. But it sounds like a character out of a trashy cheap romance novel,” said Grammy.

And she wasn’t kidding.

Austin had dinner with Kayla, her son Colt, and Grammy. They’d dined on garlic coated shrimp in a pasta, along with mushrooms and more garlic. Grammy always made sure she had garlic in all of her food to keep the Vampires away now that she had retired. Austin knew for a fact that garlic didn’t keep Vampires away.

Conversation became pleasant and without any caustic remarks. Grammy was charming and full of joy. Kayla looked relieved.

As Austin left his Grammy gave him a hug and a kiss. Then she said, “I wish you’d find a normal girl.”

Austin smiled and said, “Normal girl? Grammy, you of all people should know there is no such thing.”

Grammy just said, “pasha,” and closed the door in her grandson’s face.

 

~ End

Read all of the Austin and Elizabeth Stories (The Hunter Series) from the start.  Click here for the full set.

Juliette aka Vampire Maman

 

Dear High School Vice Principal: Why is behavior that is illegal in the workplace accepted as normal in our High School?

Dear VP,

This is a partial post of what I’m going to be sending to you next week. I’m just using my blog to hash out the ideas.

On Friday I picked my daughter up from school but before she found my car I received a text that said, “I’m going to choke someone.”

Since the first day of High School my daughter and her friends have been complaining about the behavior of other kids in the school.

These are smart, normal, nice kids. They don’t fit into any categories. They’re just teens. In their core group the kids are White (6), Black (1), Mixed Race (2) and Asian (1). There are 4 boys and 6 girls in the group. Eight are straight, two are gay. They don’t care what anyone looks like or their ethnic background or who they will one day fall in love with.

They tell me  tell me that the kids in the school are above all things sexist and disgusting. They tell me that kids are racists. They tell me that they will attack anyone who is different.

African American kids are subjected to comments like:

  • Why are you acting so white?
  • Why don’t you have black friends?
  • You don’t talk black?

One girl mentioned to my daughter that should wished she was in a different school where she could be wouldn’t be treated like she is different. She thought her school would be different but she was wrong.

Then the SAME white boys who criticize the black kids spend all of their time talking “ghetto talk.” And it is bad. Every other word is the N word, the C word, or the F word. You know what those words are.

My daughter called one of the boys out on in during PE on Friday. She asked him why he was talking like that. She told him he sounded like a 5th grader trying to be tough. She shut him down for a bit, but he’ll be back doing the same stupid stuff on Monday.

In every context and situation groups of boys constantly use the N word, the C word and the F word. This is both in and out of class. This disgusts my daughter.

My daughter is also shocked at all of the kids who hassle the Mormon teachers and students with rude and ignorant remarks. I found this surprising considering the large Mormon population at the school. Fair Oaks and Orangevale have HUGE Mormon populations so this baffles me. My family is not religious at all but I would never consider it acceptable for my child to hassle someone because of their faith.

On the other hand my daughter also told me that kids from one of the “religious clubs” tore down posters the Horror Club put up. Excuse me? That is also WRONG in every way. It is pure ignorance. Rather than finding out what the Horror Club is about the bigots from the religious club assumed they were worshiping the Devil. Excuse me but most horror novels, including this of Stephen King have a very strong good and evil focus. Good usually wins out in some sort or the other.

The real horror at the school is the bigotry, the sexist attitudes and the intolerance.

If a student, especially a male student, looks remotely Middle Eastern other kids will call him a terrorist. It doesn’t matter that he is Jewish and 4th generation American. He is still called a terrorist. Even when the Jewish kid defends himself, tries to ignore the other kids and tells them to stop it – they idiots still scream terrorist. Did you know about this?

The sexist attitudes at our high school are famous all over the school district. Kids from all school say it is the worst at our school. From the first day at school to the day they graduate girls are subjected to sexual comments. I’m not talking about a “hey baby.” These are explicit comments and suggestions. By the time a girl graduates she has received more penis selfies than she can count. And it never stops. It is all boys talk about.

Girls are constantly subjected to guys openly talking about sex, how many girls they have sex with, blow jobs, requests for blog jobs, requests for anal sex, requests to see tits, and all things related to those things. These boys don’t care who hears them.

The sad thing is the fact that a lot of kids think this is not only normal but acceptable.

My daughter complains how disgusting it is. She wonders why the worst offenders are always put in class together (her classes.) She wonders why they are so disgusting and stupid and why people put up with it.

My child isn’t some shocked little innocent. She knows there is a big wide world out there. But for heaven’s sake, what happened to manners?

I was brought up in a family full of bigots. I made a choice not to raise my child around such attitudes so you can imagine how shocked and disgusted and disappointed I am to hear about this. It happens EVERY SINGLE DAY. I’m not talking a bout isolated incidents but something that happens every single period of every single day plus in the hallways. It never stops.

Boys who hang out with girls or dress nice are called fags. Wait…if a boy hangs out with pretty girls that used to be considered pretty lucky.

From day one there have been complaints about sexist boys.

So, I have one question for you Mr. VP…

Why is behavior that is illegal in the workplace accepted as normal in High School?

Let me ask again. Why is behavior that is illegal in the workplace accepted as normal in the High School?

~ Juliette aka Vampire Maman