Vlad’s Vampire Diary: I am so confused that I just do not care anymore

Dear Diary,

My friend Randolpho slammed down the book he was reading. “Don’t you hate it when you look forward to reading a new book and it turns out to be a forced, contrived, hyped up mess?”

“Are there not reviews?” I asked him.

“There are, but this book won all kinds of prizes and the description sounded interesting. I got the old bait and switch on this one. It is going straight into the recycle bin. I’d donate it but I don’t want anyone else to have to suffer through this crap.”

“One could stick with blog posts because blog posts are usually short and demand little commitment or funding.”

“Nobody reads blogs,” said Randolpho. I knew he was wrong but declined to comment. I fear Randolpho will continue with his unfortunate book choices.

~ Vlad

 

 

Dear Diary,

I was outside this morning in my backyard thinning out a few trees over planted by the previous owner. The neighbors told me that man was as a master gardener. He was nothing but a master idiot. Even I, Vlad the Vampire King knows more about gardening that that fool did.

As I lined up my tools, tied my hair back, put on my work gloves, and scanned my back yard, making a plan my cats played and watched birds. I was busy looking at a list I had made and failed to hear the side yard gate open, for when I looked up there was my cousin Sebastian standing there grinning from ear to ear.

The last time I saw him was right before I was sealed up in a crypt and left for dead. That was a little over three hundred years ago. I was surprised but did not show it.

I had little love for my cousin Sebastian. He was a treacherous being and the worst kind of Vampire. He would have parties and raid the local town and steal children for his guests to feed upon. Young men and women would vanish during the night. He tried to seduce my wife but even she knew better than to be with such a vile and callous Vampire.

He stole. He lied. He cheated. Sebastian was also charming and quick to flatter with his silk voice and beautiful fanged smile. He twisted those around him so that others would sing his praises while he left behind a trail of death and destruction. Even our Grandfather, the most cunning and skeptical of Vampires believed everything Sebastian told him.

When I became King of Vampires I banished him from my land. Years later he and his cohorts sealed me in a crypt and left me for dead. For three hundred years I hoped he was dead and gone, but it had unfortunately no been so.

“Hello Vlad,” he said with that famous smile of his. “I thought you were dead.”

“Why are you here?” I asked.

“Aren’t you cute gardening with your hair pulled back, and your shirt off looking like a model out of Men’s Health magazine,” he said with a sneer.

He called me cute yet he did not even mention my cats. “Everyone seems to think I am cute Sebastian. I neither understand or care what you mean by that,” I said.

“How I remember you Vlad with your righteous indignation, so angry yet so pure in your convictions. How you’d stand there with your golden halo of hair, eyes burning like sapphires on fire, so ready to go in for the proverbial kill. Damn you were magnificent.”

I am still magnificent I did not tell him that. I was angry due to the fact that I knew he had been involved in my three hundred year entombment, but I did not show it. It was like one of the mystery or detective books I have been reading. A friend who smiles might very well turn out to shoot you in the back, or tear out your neck with his teeth. One never knows about these things.

“What do you want?” I asked him calmly without a hint of distrust, or of the hate that had settled like a thin layer of hardened tar in the bottom of my heart. “You always want something.”

“You had everything Vlad. What do you have now?”

I thought for a second, as I often do when asked a profound question such as this.

“I have a chainsaw, two cats, a Vampire woman who loves me despite the fact I am not a king anymore, and my looks. I am also considered cute, by the way.”

“You are nothing,” he said.

“Excuse me,” I told him as I picked up my chainsaw. “I have work to do.” I pulled the cord, then the engine started, and I swung the chain saw. The cats ran after his head as it rolled down the garden path to the strawberry patch. I noticed the Peace rose was blooming with a blush of pink on white. I forgot to tell him I had flowers.

I could not leave even a Vampire body to sit in the summer sun so I quietly put my hands over him and recited a few words in the ancient language of Vampires. He turned to a fine yellow dust, head and all. My younger cat hissed and ran away while her mother sniffed at what was left then rubbed her head against my leg.

The gate opened again and in walked my friend Randolpho. He was wearing a large ridiculous looking straw sun hat, baggy yellow short pants, and a shirt made of fabric so bright it hurt my eyes to look upon it.

“What are you wearing?” I gasped.

“My favorite Hawaiian shirt. Wow, the yard looks great Vlad, but what is that horrible sulphur smell.”

I told him of Sebastian’s visit. In turn Randolpho helped me shovel the dusty yellow ashes into  the garbage can.

“Sebastian always was a real dick,” said Randolpho. “Even when we were kids.”

Friendship is like flowers and Vampires. You treat it with care and kindness and the rewards are endless.

~ Vlad

 

 

Dear Diary,

During this time of the two thousand and twenty pandemic we do not go out as much as we did. Even Vampires have decided it is better to stay in as much as possible.

My friend Randolpho and my Vampire lover Gillian have taken to sitting on my couch all night watching Netflix and drinking alcohol and blood concoctions. Tonight Gillian made something called Bloody Marys made with blood, vodka, red vegetable juice, limes, and a variety of spices.

We are beyond the point of no return I fear with our sanity being in trouble. Gillian and Randolpho are watching something called The Floor is Lava. I am both appalled and fascinated.

“Maybe the three of us should sign up for the show. We’d kick ass,” said Randolpho.

This is a strange world indeed in which we live, and even stranger times. Even someone my age, which is six hundred and seventy six years knows we are in strange times.

At this point I don’t even care. I poured more vodka in my drink. At least I am cute. That seems to be the only constant these days.

~ Vlad

Kissed by a Vampire

This has been the 62nd installment of Vlad’s Vampire Diary. Click here to read Vlad’s story from the beginning.

Lost Keys and Lies

Every have one of those days when getting out of the house seems nearly impossible?

I couldn’t find my keys this morning and of course I was running late. And no I can’t just change myself into a bat.  That only happens in fiction.

I’m scouring the house but nothing. Then I heard a throat clearing.  I turned around and behind me is the Ghost, damn him, with my keys.

“I believe I have something of yours.” He said that with a nasty curl of his lip then flicked a lock of black hair out of his eyes.

I reached for the keys and they vanished, along with the Ghost.

I let out a string of not so nice words (the kind moms pretend not to know) and then tried to sense where he could have gone.

Off of the bookshelf I grabbed the box with all of the spare keys. Does anyone else have keys to cars, doors, and safe boxes they don’t even remember?

Anyway I grabbed the spare keys to my car and yelled, “If you don’t give me my keys back I’ll pour a bottle of Pinesol on your grave. I’ll pour a gallon on it.”

Nothing.

“I know where your grave is Nigel. I looked you up. I know all about you.”

I heard a clang as the keys dropped on the tile floor of the kitchen. I picked them up and headed for the front door.

He stood there waiting for me. “How’d you find out where my grave is?”

“I don’t even know your last name. How would I know where your grave is?” I looked at him with such calm as his eyes narrowed and threatened to turn me to ice.

“You’re a Vampire and a liar,” he snarled at me.

“And I’m really good at being both.” Then I smiled and headed out the door.

Anyway, tell your kids that lies and bad words are not acceptable…of course unless you’re dealing with a Ghost.

~ Juliette aka Vampire Maman

keys

Note: This was first posted in 2013. Today is a busy day for me so I thought you’d like more fun and a blast from the past from Nigel and me. Sure he’ll hate me for it but the guy is a Ghost. What do you expect? On the other hand being a Ghost has nothing to do with it. I bet he was an asshole when he was alive.

~ J

Lockdown Update

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Even I have to admit things have been weird.

I dropped the youngest child off at the airport today to return to her home in Southern California. In normal times the Southwest terminal is PACKED. Dozens of cars are lined up to drop off passengers. Today mine was the only car. The only person waiting was my daughter’s boyfriend. He stood there at a distance wearing his mask.

I dropped her off and returned home to a bored husband who is frustrated at trying to do anything with the government (concerning his business.)

While my daughter was in one of her online courses yesterday another student had a melt down over the lack of support the professor is giving. You’d never see that in a real classroom. It isn’t the first time and it won’t be the last.

And if you think going to the grocery store is a hassle try being a Vampire right now. I’ll spare you the uncomfortable details.

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Several friends have spoken to me about their frustration with those who have used this time to spout unnecessary political venting.

Others have spoken of their lack of motivation when it comes to creative endeavors. Yes, we have all the time in the world but working on anything has become just sort of weird.

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But on a good note my garden is beautiful. My pets are happy. I’m in touch with everyone. I see the humor that has come out in people. I’ve seen the humor and creativity more than the ugliness.

So stay creative. I’ll try to do the same. If not creative just stay positive. Go for a walk. Watch a movie. Read a book. Listen to music. Find a new podcast. Text an old friend. Pass on funny memes. Stay away from protests. Don’t be a dick. Feel free to share the form below with your most whiney assed friends.

xoxox

~ Juliette aka Vampire Maman

 

 

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Smoke Gets in Your Eyes – but please no yoga pants

Odds and Ends – Musings on my state of mind.

This morning as I was leaving the self-serve dog wash with a clean old dog and a fifteen pound bag of dog food under my arm I saw road rage. Yes, right there in the Trader Joe’s parking lot between the organic bakery and the dog wash.

Fresh from getting her Zen and Zang aligned with the universe at her Friday morning yoga class, a woman in an expensive SUV started screaming “BITCH you can’t have my spot.” She was screaming at another woman who was also in an SUV (woman number two was not wearing yoga pants.) It was one of those WTF moments for me. After helping my old dog with the bad leg into my car I could only hope that nobody would scream at me. If they did there might be hell to pay later, much later, but maybe not. It just isn’t worth my time. Karma will get the screamer much more effectively than any Vampire could.

As a rule, aside from swimwear and underwear I never wear anything with an elastic waist band. I do not have road rage. Yes, of course I swear in the my car and curse enough to make the Devil himself blush – I’m a mom. All mom’s swear in the car, just as any child. BUT I do not have road rage.

I’ve been out and about during the day a lot more lately. Things are different in the light of day. At night people are predictable. They are usually tired or drunk or happy to be where they are. During the day the world if full of women who are full of rage. Raging women with well manicured hands and yoga pants. There are also the moms with a baby in one hand and a dog pulling the other with a leash. Yes, it looks good on paper, but in reality the dog and the baby rarely want to go in the right direction. The three I saw today were so cute. I remembered those days except I had two exceptionally large hairy girl dogs (90 and 125 lbs) and babies in tow. Auto pilot time!

When my children were small I always knew a lot of the well-kept raging women with their aligned Zen were blissfully ignorant of their husband’s girlfriends or of their market value going down in the workplace. I was never Zenfully aligned in any way shape or form. The universe has never been an aligned or straight forward place for me. That makes things difficult at times but you know, it just the way things are.

Disclaimer: Not everyone who does yoga is one of those women so don’t get all pissed off.

Then I saw two guys with a lot of hair and backpacks. I don’t know if they were homeless or just traveling through. At the light a Lumbersexual (you know, the long hipster beard, boots and red plaid jacket or shirt) talked to the hairy guys. It was cool.

I saw the old guy with the purple mohawk who rides his bicycle along the streets. I saw the tiny kindergarteners in their cute sun hats all holding on to a rope and walking to the park with their teachers. With a rope no kids can complain of holding hands with blisters or a hand of someone they don’t like or being paired up with a hand squeezer. Ropes rock when it comes to controlling children. And it is sooooooo cute.

As I’m driving home with the now clean dog, I realized that now I smell like dirty dog. When you wash a dog it is just a matter of you transferring the vile smells to your own body. I turned on my music because the dog can’t use the car stereo system like the rest of my family. Nobody was there to change it. I played my own soundtrack for my own movie.

I keep adding songs and pushing some off of the playlist. Some are on the list forever while others only last a week or two. And I am still pissed off at Apple their asshattery when they slapped the U2 album on my iPhone. More mom swearing. But back to my yen and yang…

We all have to find our own soundtracks. We all have to find what route we want to take on any given day. Even when we’re forced to take another road to another place, even if that place is unknown, it isn’t always a bad thing. In fact, it is usually a good thing.

Then there are those rings that are old and new like my fifteen year old and her sixteen year old partner skating to “Smoke Gets in Your Eyes.” In two hours he’ll be listening to Metallica and she’ll be listening to Night Riots or some sort of smooth jazz but for now, they dance like Fred and Ginger on eight wheels. Today it is International (nor organ music like American dance, just orchestral.) They’re really beautiful out there on the floor.

Other things run through my mind like calls from my brothers about getting out blood stains, dealing with females, and dealing with the ends and outs of living in world that is just a little bit different. Not bad, not wrong, not strange to us, just different.

I thought about the time, a long time ago, when my brother Val and I were kids. We were walking along the edge of the river and found a giant dead sturgeon on the beach. We swore it was at least twenty feet long. Looking back I think it was about six feet long – still a large beast. It was just one of those random thoughts that I’ll call him about tonight or maybe tomorrow. I thought about a lot of things today with my only company being the dog.

Rummaging through the dusty files in my brain I pulled out cracked faded folders on old lovers, images of places I can’t remember and things I remember as if it had happened this morning. Closing my mind I could feel the warm summer breeze on my bare skin as I walked along the beach, hoping it would stay warm, if only for another few hours.

Next I sent Garrett (who is off at college) about a dozen photos of the dogs and cats playing in the tall winter grass. I also sent him pathetic photos of the dog being washed. Fun stuff. A lot of xoxoxoxo sort of stuff followed and came back. He sent selfies and some included friends. I thought again of the mom with the tiny baby and the dog. She has no idea how much fun she will have or how much love.

So reach into your brain, take out your files and throw them into the air, with all of the brittle paper that might fly into bits along with dust and old love letters and bits of this and that. Holy crap, what a mess that would make.

I’m looking forward to a calm evening for tomorrow… who knows what it will bring but it is always something.

~ Juliette aka Vampire Maman

Jasmine

First posted in February 2015

That was the last time I took Jasmine to the dog wash before she passed away. She wasn’t feeling well for a few months, then had a stroke before she crossed the Rainbow Bridge. I still watch people in parking lots and know they live in another universe than I do. And the kids are doing great. I still miss Jasmine. 

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The Curse of Bloke Island

We’re watching the current season of The Curse of Oak Island AGAIN. Maybe they’ll find another button this week, or a spike, or …. could it be WOOD? Or maybe we’re just watching to hear Gary talk. We love the way Gary talks. In the meantime I have a little story for you about my brother Max.

Curse of Bloke Island

They were all such guys. Really. They expected her to do all the work while they farted around and shared all of their bull shit sexist stories. It wasn’t as if she had an opinion. It wasn’t as if she wasn’t a valued member of the team. It wasn’t as if they even knew she was there until they needed something.

Mehitabel walked up the path to the top of the hill. She could see in the dark moonless night with no problem. That was never a problem. The only dark that bothered her was the dense void of her male counterparts.

At the top of the hill she raised her hands to the level of her shoulders than put her palms up. Her feet raised up off of the ground. She could levitate. Most of the males at the camp couldn’t even imagine doing anything like that. They were all Vampires, sure, they were, but none of them could harness the powers of darkness like she could. Sure they were larger and stronger physically, but they were such jerks.

And she always beat them at Risk. Every. Single. Time. The girl beat them at Risk.

Putting her feet back on the ground she listened to the surf break on the beach below.

He’d be there in a minute. She always knew. He always knew that she knew. He was the sender. She was the receiver. That was it. He was such a guy.

Mehitabel turned around. There stood he stood, the ultimate in alpha Vampire guys. Dark hair, amused eyes, and handsome as hell.

“Max,” she said, “I knew you’d be here.”

“You always do. We have that connection,” said the man who had also told her that he could never love her. What an asshole. What a guy.

He put his arm around her, and with his hand on the small of her back he pulled her close and kissed her.

She kissed back then pulled away. “What do you want Max?”

“You know what I want.”

Such a guy.

“Hey Max,” she said. “After we get rid of the Vampire Hunter headquarters on the island, get the treasure back, and clean up the mess, do you want to go see the new Charlie’s Angels movie with me?”

He smiled. “Sure, that would be fun. It’s a date.” Then he kissed her again.

He was such a guy.

 

~ End

 

~ Juliette aka Vampire Maman

 

Gasoline and Tiger Maple (Don’t Mix)

Andy had dined with his friends Ramon and Sophia. They were always a treat. Tonight there was an interesting mix of high blood alcohol levels mixed with a slight after taste of cocaine and a hint something he couldn’t quite identify. It might have been Morphine.

Hell, it could have been chocolate for all he cared. It was good to come home to friends who were funny and smart and oh so accommodating to his needs.

After two weeks out of town playing Don Giovanni he was ready to become himself. It was good to be Andy again. It was good to be home in San Francisco where he didn’t have to worry about snow.

He parked in the garage and threw his vicuña overcoat on one of the kitchen stools. The pile of mail was already on the table where the neighbor had left it for him. It was the usual bills and magazines. A postcard from his girlfriend Shawna was on the top. She was in Chicago lecturing on flying dinosaurs. He smiled. The postcard was Van Gough’s self-portrait from the Art Institute. She’d remembered that he’d told her about it when they’d first met. One of the reasons he loved her was because she remembered the little things.

Smiling as he poured a shot of Bourbon he quietly sang “La ci darem la mano” thinking of Shawna. There was a sudden warmth in the air that wasn’t from the Bourbon or thoughts of love. Someone else was in the house.

Andy made a mental note to call the alarm company. Son of a bitch.  He walked to the living room and saw them – a man and a woman dressed in black. They had guns, silver crosses and knives. Vampire Hunters.

“Andrew Todd.” The man said his name as a fact, not a question.

“I’m sorry the show is over for the night you have to leave before the stage manager throws you out.” He laughed at his own joke then downed the Bourbon. “What the fuck are you doing in my house?”

“You’ve lived your lie for too long.”

“What lie? Do you put everything about yourself out to the world? Well?” Andy was going to make a joke about putting it all on Twitter but thought the better of it.

The woman held up the cross. “Oh please,” said Andy, “that isn’t going to harm me. We’re all God’s children around here.” Damn Vampire Hunters. They didn’t know a thing about Vampires, much less hunting them.

The woman looked surprised. Very surprised. Andy just smiled and calculated what he’d do about the situation.

Suddenly the man poured gasoline against the antique buffet against the wall.

“Hey, no. That’s tiger maple. Awww man, don’t do that.”

The man spun around to face the Vampire. “We’ve been watching you Todd.”

“I’m feeling really violated here. If you burn my house down…I mean, really, in this neighborhood?”

The man poured more gasoline as the woman pointed a gun at Andy.

“Do you really want to do this? What good would it do killing me?”

The man started to talk of evil and darkness. It was some sort of mumbo jumbo sort of spell or chant. From the bowels of darkness, cursed undead, blood of our ancestors spilled by your unholy trinity of death, blood and carnal desires. Unrelenting evil…

“Oh come on,” said Andy. “That isn’t going to do anything except make you sound even more stupid than you already are. Look at me.”

“Don’t look at the Vampire in the eyes,” screamed the woman.

Andy walked towards the man then quickly grabbed his neck. “Look at me. I’m just like you. We even have the same eye color. We’re not that different. Look at me. Look at my eyes or I’ll tear fucking your head off. Now let go of the gas can before you hurt yourself. Besides, you’re tired. Close your eyes, fall asleep, dream of warm tropical breezes and sweet kisses from a woman so hot that she’ll burn your skin.”

The man collapsed onto a large wing back chair dead asleep.

Andy looked at the woman. “You want a glass of wine? A cocktail perhaps? Help yourself. I’ll just be a minute. One more thing, put the gun down and stand still, right there. If you don’t I’ll kill you. Capisce?”

The Vampire sank his teeth into the man’s neck for just a minute. Enough time to keep his prey in sweet dreams for a few more minutes, and in nightmares for a few more months.

“I’m done drinking for the night Jenna. Yes my dear, I know your name. I got it from your friend here.”

He took her hand and led her to the formal living room. Music started. His hand went to her waist. “Dance with me.”

Jenna attempted to pull away from the cold grip of the Vampire. “No, I won’t dance with a Vampire”.

Andy pulled her closer. “Then just dance with the guy who can sing.”

“Please spare me from a fate worse than death. I will die a thousand deaths before I become one of the undead.”

“Oh cut the Gothic melodramatic crap. I’m the one who was born in the 1851. You don’t hear me talking like that. Jesus, I’m not going to turn you into a Vampire. Have you ever met a Vampire before tonight?”

“No.” Her voice sounded small, more like a child than a grown woman.

“Jenna, dear, you have a good heart but the enemy you need to be chasing isn’t Vampires or Werewolves or whoever you think need chasing. The enemy is ignorance and bigotry and hatred.  Fight for the equality of women and the rights of children. Fight for those who don’t have a voice. Fight for the freedom of expression and art. Fight for a cause that matters.”

She looked into his hazel blue eyes and swayed as if she was going to faint. The man, still slumped on the chair croaked out “don’t listen to him Jenna.”

Andy shot a glance at the man. “One more noise from you and I’ll rip your heart right out of your chest with my bare hands. Do you understand? And I’ll send you the bill for the damage to my furniture and floors.”

He went back to the woman. “What am I going to do with you? You’ve broken into my home. You’ve damaged a valuable and beautiful piece of furniture. You’ve invaded my privacy. You’re lucky you didn’t touch my piano. What I should do is call the police.”

“You’re a Vampire.”

“So tell me something I don’t know. I pay taxes. I own a home. I vote.”

“But…”

“Jenna, stop.  I’m not happy about what you and your boyfriend have done here tonight. Plus you’re a bigot who got nothing what so ever from my speech to you about bigotry and ignorance. What the hell is wrong with you? Honestly?”

Andy ran his hand through his hair and took a deep breath. The house reeked of gasoline and fear. The morning sun just started to come through the windows. He turned back to Jenna.

“The only reason I’m letting you live is because I don’t want to deal with your bodies. I already have enough of a mess. The reason I’m not calling the police is because I’d rather not have to deal with a trial. In the meantime every Vampire on the West Coast will know your names and what you’re up to. You can’t hide. You will never be able to hide from us. So if you’re smart you’ll stay as far away from any Vampires or Vampire Hunters as you humanly can. Now, I am going to take my bags upstairs. When I get back down I want you gone.”

After they left Andrew surveyed the damage. He’d have to call the furniture guy and the alarm company. Someone would have to take a look at the rugs and the hardwood floors.

But before he did any of that there was someone else he needed to call. Andy dialed the number he knew so well. She picked up on the first ring. He closed his eyes and sat down. “Hey Mom. I’m home. Can you come over?”

~ Juliette aka Vampire Maman

 

This was first published here in March of 2014.