Accidental Meetings

Accidental Meetings

Accidental Meetings

Accidental Meetings

“You must come now,” said a whispery voice on the phone.

“What is it?” I asked afraid to find out what the ancient fragile Vampire needed.

“It is a human thing,” he said, now no longer in a whisper. “We need your help.”

I told them to call 911 and wait.

30 minutes later my 17-year-old Garrett and I had arrived at the farmhouse. My husband Teddy and 14-year-old Clara were out seeing “Frozen” with friends. I swear, I’m surprised I didn’t get pulled over for speeding, but it isn’t like I couldn’t have talked my way out of a ticket.

We parked by the side of the road which was blocked off by a lot of emergency vehicles. Flashing lights and a lot of people – exactly what Vampires like us try to avoid. Without interacting with anyone we made it to the farmhouse.

Tellias met us at the door wearing steel-blue coveralls, the kind that mechanics wear, with a bright yellow scarf around his neck. His white blonde hair fell around his shoulders. Eleora had on a stretched out red sweater and a red and blue pleated plaid skirt that fell a few inches below her knees. She had on pink slippers. Her hair was wet.

They look like they’re only 19 or 20 years old but they are ancient Vampires – over 2,000 years old. Dealing with elders isn’t just for regular humans or pet owners. We all must take care of those in our lives who need extra help.

They took Garrett and me by the hands and brought us into the house.

“Why is your hair wet sweetie?” I asked Eleora.

“A car went into the water,” she whispered.

“A car went into the river with a woman in it,” said Tellias. “Eleora pulled her out, and her daughter.”

“Another car hit them. I went into the water after them. I could feel their fear. I broke the glass and pulled them out.”

Tellias came close and whispered. “They were full of water. Eleora sucked the water right out of their lungs.”

Eleora nodded her head. “Right out.”

“Did you help anyone else?” I had to ask, fearing certain answers.

Tellias narrowed his eyes at me. “Nobody will die tonight Juliette.”

“Not tonight,” sang Eleora with a smile and a wink.

I swear, dealing with these ancient Vampires drives me crazy.

I glared at them and could hear myself lecturing them. “You should have let them alone. You shouldn’t have helped except to get them out of the water or basic first aid. You know the rules.”

“We made the rules,” said Tellias. “Stop scolding us.”

The front door opened. John, who lived next door, was standing there looking grim. In his early 60’s he was still a handsome man who made heads turn. “Juliette, come outside.”

With Garrett tagging along, I followed John to the edge of driveway. I could see the top of a car in the river. Two other mangled cars and a large farm truck were on the side of the road.

John was visibly shaken but not saying anything about his own fears or pain. His wife had been killed in a car accident 20 years ago. “Eleora and Tellias were out for a walk and saw it all. It looked like a drunk in a truck was speeding. He clipped a car and it spun out taking other cars with them. The drunk kept on going. When the car went into the river Eleora dove in and pulled out a woman and her daughter. Then we helped with the rest. It’s a miracle nobody was killed, but…” He tapered off. I knew the but. There were serious injuries and lives interrupted. Then there was the matter of Eleora and Tellias helping.

“They saved lives tonight.” John patted my back. “I couldn’t believe how quickly they took action. People would have died…”

I stopped him from saying more. “Have you ever read Dracula? I don’t want to use that as an example because it is fiction. Fiction John. But remember the character Renfield? The crazy guy who ate bugs? Any lives they saved tonight will forever be bound to Tellias and Eleora if they want it. Not that Tellias or Eleora will ever act on it or whatever, but those people, those humans, will be bound forever to those two old fools who live next door to you.”

“You’re harsh,” said John.

“I’m a realist. You aren’t a Vampire. You have no idea what we can do to people.”

“I’ve lived around your family my entire life.”

“We’ve sheltered and protected you. You don’t know,” I snapped.

Garrett tugged at my arm, “Mom, I would have done the same thing. I mean, I would have saved them.”

I said nothing. I was too angry to say anything. All I could do was look at the wreckage almost numb at the extent of the damage. The three of us turned and walked back to the farmhouse.

A Highway Patrol officer was at the house. The two woman who been pulled from the car were sitting in the kitchen wrapped in blankets. It broke my heart to see them and know what a horrible frightening experience they’d had. At the same time I knew   what other nightmares they might have.

Eleora had made tea for everyone. The officer was asking them questions. He knew Eleora. No doubt she’d sucked blood out of his big handsome neck in the past as he patrolled the rural route past their farm. Sometimes being a Vampire was more complicated that I wanted it to be (yes, add that to having kids in high school and marriage and work and everything else a mom does.)

Questions were answered. Everyone involved in the accident was taken away to hospitals or home. I left the elders with John. I couldn’t wait to get home.

Eleora and Tellias gave us hugs before we left and thanked us for coming. Eleora whispered in my ear, “We love you so much.” I kissed her cheek and patted her hand.

When we got into the car I told Garrett to play music. Any music as long as it was loud and would get my mind off of the night.

As I drove away my mind wandered back to the day before. I was having a conversation with my kids about vegans. If you’re a vegan because of “moral” reasons could you be a scavenger – that is could you eat road kill because it is already dead? Then my husband said “Redneck Vegans. That could be a new TV show.”

As if he could read my mind, which he could because we’re, you know, Vampires, Garrett said, “We need our own reality TV show Mom. We could call  it Blood Relatives.”

“Very good. But nobody would believe it.”

“They believe Honey Boo Boo and Duck Dynasty.”

“Then we’d have to be redneck Vampires and I’m not going to be a redneck.”

“Mom, we could be The Red Neck Vampires. Get it? Red Neck.”

“Nice try. I love you baby.”

“Love you too Mom.”

I thought of the mother and daughter who were saved. The daughter was about the same age as my son. That could have been us. We could have been in danger if there had been fire or something much worse. I took his hand and gave it a squeeze.

By the time we arrived back home I was feeling a lot better. We watched the sunrise together before we went inside.

In big and little ways the ability to change directions and go from one extreme to another without missing a beat is what life is all about. Old and young and all of us in the middle – it is what we do. It is who we are.

For the new year remember to make it a goal to love and to appreciate the miraculous and strange things that happen in life, both big and little. It isn’t magic or mystical. It is just chance or you could say a twist of fate, but not really fate.

You never know who will be there to help. You never know but sometimes it might seem like a miracle or something you won’t be able to describe. But there are those who will help – more than you think.

I don’t really believe in fate, not much. None the less, when good things happen or bad things are avoided treasure that. Most of all you should treasure those precious folks that make up your life.

~ Juliette aka Vampire Maman

elder gingerbread

Remembrances of School, Life and Love

Remembrances of School, Life and Love

We recently had a party at the farm owned by the Elders.  All four of my brothers were there, along with Cody our new Vampire, Matthew an old Vampire who is trying to become more modern for the sake of his son, along with a rare visit from my niece and nephew, my kids, plus several other friends and their teens.  It was one of those wonderful early fall evenings when the weather is just starting to change and the cool Delta breezes take away the last of the daytime heat.

I’d been tasked at helping Cody transition to the world of Vampires when he was changed into one of us, unknowingly about two years ago (he knows now and is a find young Vampire). Since then the 32 year old and I had become close friends and he’d settled quiet well into our lives.

He stood with my great great great grandmamma Lola on the steps of the cottage she lives in next to the much larger Victorian farm house the elders and my brother Val lived in. Cody’s arms were around Lola, as if he never wanted to let her go. He kissed her and ran his hand over her long curls. They were so sweet together. Lola might have been born the same year as Geoffrey Chaucer,  sometime around 1365, but she looks about 25 or 26. The age difference between Lola and Cody is an issue with some members of my family. Or maybe it is just the fact that she hasn’t hitched herself to some older and more traditional Vampire. They fail to remember that Lola has never been one to hold to tradition.

My brother Max snarled under his breath and looked across the lawn at them in disgust. “I can’t believe she attached herself to him.”

“Just shut up and give it a rest. They’re happy. Be happy for them.” I wanted to call my eldest brother an asshole but refrained. But he knew I was thinking it. Do you ever just want to smack someone but don’t because… well just because you’re the better person for it and you know the person you want to smack can beat the hell out of you. Anyway…

Since it is fall, the talk turned to school. High School for the younger members of the party. College and law school for my brother Aaron’s kids.

The kids always marvel that any of us know how to read and write at all considering we went to school back in the days before Wikipedia, electricity and smart phones. They are astounded that we even had colleges to attend. Oh the innocence and ignorance of youth.

Matthew and his son Josh are new to the group. Josh is a typical teen, engrossed in friends and music. Matthew is an old fashioned Vampire (we called them Shadow Creepers) who lived as if it was another century (past not future) but he wanted a better life for his son, as a Modern Vampire. He reached out to us about a year ago and moved to our area. Josh has thrived. Matthew is still a bit uneasy but is trying to embrace this new world he has found himself in.

A while back Matthew mentioned that we live like Regular Humans more than we live like Vampires. I told him that we all live in the same world so maybe Regular Humans live more like us.

That said, someone asked Matthew what school was like for him back at the end of the 18th Century.

He thought for a moment, a little apprehensive about telling his story. Then he began, in his almost seductive expressive voice (which he is totally unaware of.)

Matthew began. “My mother was the second wife of my wealthy father. His first wife had died after giving him six healthy sons and a daughter.  My mother, Anna, was a pretty toy and brood mare for his business empire. She bore him another seven children before succumbing to illness. I was the fifth of Anna’s children, the 10th son of my father. I hardly knew my mother and was raised by tutors and nursemaids.

I remember once going into my father’s library and upon finding him there I attempted to strike up a conversation. He looks at me with a puzzled smile and said “Matthew, isn’t it? You’re Matthew. Can you read young man?” I nodded my head and he told me to find a book and leave him to his business.

The following month my father remarried another pretty young fertile women. Upon the return from their honeymoon he sent all of Anna’s sons off to boarding school.  I was only eight years old.  My father’s third wife gave him six more children giving his a total of nineteen offspring. Fifteen sons and four daughters.

In boarding school our masters taught us mathematics, music, religion and business so that we’d be prosperous and upstanding businessmen and citizens when we grew into men.  They treated us well but there were little or no emotional ties beyond what we made with our dorm mates.  I was often lonely but accepted my lot in life. I knew nothing else.  I was just another commodity to my father. I had no mother. My brothers were indifferent to me.

Shortly after my 14th birthday I looked out the window over the fields near the school and saw a figure of a girl standing in the moonlight. We looked at each other for what seemed like forever, and then she waved and vanished. She returned every night for a month, then one evening I awoke and there she was sitting on the edge of my bed, a black cloak around her shoulders, her honey gold hair in curls around her face. She was so pale yet so lovely, a young girl of my own age. Her name was Sabina and she already knew mine was Matthew.

Sabina took my hand and we went outside. It was odd to me that nobody noticed our departure. For several months she would visit and soon I grew to love her. And one day I kissed her and…”

He faltered. “She told me that she loved me. That night I left my school and old life forever. Through her blood and her love I became a Vampire and was accepted into her world, a world I came to willingly, where my new family remembered my name.  We were together for over 200 years until…until our son was just four years old and she was taken from us. Thirteen years ago last month. It seems like the time with her was but a moment but the few years without her has been forever.”

Matthew’s son Josh put his arms around his father’s neck and gave him a hug.  Matthew closed his eyes for a brief moment, then gave a slight uncertain smile.

Later I thanked Matthew for his story and welcomed him again to the world of Modern Vampires.

Being “different” can bring a difficult set of challenges to parenting. On the other hand it can enhance life for your child because you’ve seen the world through unique eyes yet you can understand what others expect of you. And if you do it right you can bring your child the best of all possible worlds.

Have a good weekend everyone,

~ Juliette aka Vampire Maman

sabine

Short Story Sunday – Another nasty little vampire story (to thrill and delight)

A Man Should Have What He Wants

A Story from Juliette aka Vampire Maman (first posted April 2013)

A house full of books and the ghosts of what could have been.

What can be. Oliver Thomas thought as he sat on the edge of the bed.

He never let himself get close to those he visited over the years. It was easy to become detached just as one could be detached to an apple or a head of lettuce.

She slept quietly. On the nightstand were books, earrings, a clock set for 5:00 a.m., and her glasses. Her husband was snoring and slept in another room. Her children were tucked into their dreams. Oliver made sure of that. They’d all be asleep.

Oliver Thomas kept coming back to her. She was different, by her own accord. Laurel had always been different – the type who saw the world in visions and possibilities. Someone who overcame obstacles.  If she grew to be old she’d be a sweet eccentric with her window boxes full of exotic flowers and vast knowledge of the obscure and unusual.

She had a hard time making friends due to her shyness and reluctance to follow up. Her fear of rejection paralyzed her in some areas of her life. Most of life was paralyzing but she seemed to thrive and succeed.

Yet, the woman could light up a room with her wit and charm. She was a success despite her low opinion of herself.

But he’d fallen in love with her in a strange way that someone falls in love with an idea of perfection and the ideal person to share life’s adventures with.

Her teenage kids still hung all over her like toddlers, leaning on her even now. They were taller than she was, dressed in their black band shirts with trendy long hair and black painted nails.  Oliver had seen Laurel once, her son with his lanky arm around her shoulder, her daughter with an arm around her waist. How many women, he wondered, envied her for the closeness she had with her children.

If it wasn’t for her children she might have checked out and left the world a long time ago. Since childhood Laurel had been uncomfortable with life and the tremendous effort it took for her to live with herself and her failures.

Oliver saw that Laurel had failed to see her success, except with her children. He didn’t want to think of her marriage with Craig. It worked better than most. In fact, for the most part, her marriage to Craig was an uncommon success.

Craig, the handsome and successful husband, was the love of her life. Even in her dreams Laurel couldn’t cheat on Craig. They’d built a life together. For her that was enough. More than enough she told herself.

But Oliver knew it wasn’t enough. Laurel found her life in others but kept her secret soul and passions locked up, bound in shadows and secrets.

At one time, Oliver and Laurel had been lovers. The memory of her warm skin, her lips on his own, her hands in his hair and her passion haunted him. He’d come and gone from her life assuming she’d always be there.

Now he was only with her in the dream world of the night.  She’d remember him in another time and place in long lost memories of centuries past. She’d think she’d had a life in another time with him, a past life of possibilities and promise and passion.

An unlikely candidate this middle aged working mom, too tired and busy  to think of herself except when she let her imagination fly as she commuted to school and work in her car each morning, or when she dozed off at night in her own secret places.

The passions were still in her, as it had been when she was young. How could that be?  He kissed her then buried his face into her neck and when he’d had enough of her he silently left her with dreams of passion and desire.

The following evening Oliver looked up from his desk and there she was, standing in the doorway. Black dress, apple green sweater, black heels. The blue Coach bag, a 50th birthday present from her husband was slung over her shoulder. She looked she owned the world, but she still didn’t think she was beautiful.

How did she find me here? I never told her where I live?

“Laurel.” He said her name as if in a dream.

“Don’t Laurel me Oliver. I want you to leave me alone.”

He stood and approached her with his hands held out. “It was always the wrong time or place for us.”

She stepped back ignoring his open arms. “Don’t even start with me Oliver. It would have never worked. You always said I was too independent. Then you turned around and called me needy.”

“I never said any of those things.” He was shocked by her accusations.

“You didn’t have to say it. You made it obvious you were thinking it.”

He didn’t respond. This wasn’t the time for the witty dialog they’d shared in the past, the long talks through the night or the sweet lover’s words.

“Laurel, you can’t stand there before me and say that with a straight face.”

She looked at the floor then looked up straight into his eyes. “You never told me you loved me.”

“I didn’t have to.”

“Bull shit. You just expected me to hang around and wait for you to come in and out of my life. It got old Oliver. But it doesn’t matter. I’m married to a man who loves me the way I am.  I’m successful, happy and I love my life.”

“I doubt if Craig realizes what a fortunate man he is.”

“He knows.”

“Did you ever tell him about me?” Oliver took a step forward. Laurel folded her arms as if to shut him out.

“I haven’t told anyone about you. They’d all think I was nuts. Just like my Aunt Margaret when she talked about her Vampire.”

“You still love me Laurel.” Oliver said those words quietly with such passion that almost no woman would be able to resist. No woman except Laurel.

She turned and left, slamming the door behind her.

Oliver watched from the window as she got in her car and drove away. The slightest hint of regret surged through his dark thoughts. He’d never meet another who captured his heart and his passions like she had.  He’d never meet anyone who made him laugh or feel the joy of being like Laurel had.

Oliver heard the steps behind him but didn’t turn around. A warm hand caressed his shoulder.

“Is she gone?” The speaker was obviously annoyed.

“Yes.”

“Does she have any idea I’m here?”

“No.”

Craig looked out the window. “Good. Where do we go from here?”

“Are you absolutely sure you want to do this?”

“My son is an Emo freak who acts in plays and writes poetry for fun. My daughter won’t talk to anyone unless it’s a text. My wife is never going to lose the baby fat or stop telling stupid jokes or snoring or complaining how hard she works. It wasn’t what I signed up for.”

“I understand.”

“Just for once I want what I want. I don’t want to go home to a woman who is tired all the time and can’t even comprehend my needs.”

“What about your children? You must care about them on some level.”

“They’ll be fine without me. Laurel will have two million dollars in life insurance to get the kids through college. There’s another 10 million in assets she can sell off if she has to. She’ll make sure her children have wonderful memories of me.”

“The news of your death will break her heart.”

Craig scowled at Oliver. “Laurel is already so miserable she won’t even notice. She’ll be happy to be the unfortunate widow and bask in the glow of her own sorrow. I’m doing her a favor by dying rather than divorcing her.”

“And your girlfriends?” Asked Oliver.

“They’re whores who think they can get ahead by sleeping with the CEO. They’ll both get their pink slips next week. So now what?”

Oliver went back around to his desk and sat in the antique leather chair. “Your car will be found in the river and it will be assumed your body was washed away with the currents. Your wallet and a few clothing items will be found washed up on a beach. It will be assumed that you died.”

“So when do I change?”

“Change?”

“When do I become like you? A Vampire.” Craig asked this impatiently almost sounding like a spoilt teen.

Oliver took a deep breath and answered him. “Tonight if you want, but I’d rather wait until tomorrow.”

Craig leaned on the desk close to the Vampire. “I want this Oliver. I want my freedom.”

“You’ll get what you want Craig.”

“Oliver, I’m telling you…”

Craig started to speak but Oliver held up his hand. “We’ll take my jet to Rome in the morning. By the time we get there you’ll be a different man. The old Craig will be gone forever. In the meantime, you need to see your children one last time.”

Laurel sat in the high school auditorium waiting for the play to start. A Midsummer’s Night Dream. Her son played Lysander and her daughter was playing Puck.

Craig had called earlier to tell her he was working late. He’d been sorry to miss the play but said he’d see it on closing night next weekend. She thought she was going to throw up. She pulled out her phone and listened to the message she’d received right after she’d seen Oliver.

A sing song girlish voice said “Laurel this is Trinity, Craig’s assistant. I wanted to let you know that I’ve been sleeping with your husband for about two years. He said I did all those nasty fetish things you wouldn’t do and I believed him. I really really loved him and would have done anything but he dumped me for Tara Hall. She’s like the VP of Marketing.  They’ve been doing it since October so he was two timing on me too. Stupid puke. So when he says he is gone on business he’s really with her. I just thought you’d want to know because you seem like a nice lady.”

It was the fifth time she’d listened to it. Each time she’d hoped she’d heard it wrong but that wasn’t the case.

A text came in from Craig saying he had a change of plans and was on his way.

Concentrate. Don’t think about him. It isn’t true. He’ll be here any minute. Don’t cry.

The house lights went down and the play started.

Oliver Thomas stood on the side of the river and watched the emergency crews on the opposite shore drag out a sliver convertible, the headless body of the driver still strapped in the seat. Some unfortunate member of the police department would find sightless eyes attached to a severed head staring up at him from the floor of the passenger seat.

Witnesses said another car had forced him off the road. The convertible rolled and went into the water. It had been too dark to get any plate numbers or a good description of the other car.

Craig wanted to be free of his wife and children. A man should have what he wants after all.

Now Oliver would do it right. He’d wait a few months, he had time and he’d be there for Laurel and her children, like he should have been all along.

Tangled Tales

Tangled Tales

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This story was first posted in April, 2013. Nathaniel Chase  was asking about Oliver and since I don’t have anything new, I’m reposting this one. Next week I’ll have some stories from a few of my talented friends. In the meantime, for those of you who are new here, this blog has over 400 posts of stories and words of wisdom, parenting, poetry, and plain foolishness and things that will make you laugh (or not) and a lot of Modern Vampire stuff (and the ghost) and I believe I already mentioned parenting. For a taste (click here)  Never Shout Never – Absolutely Never.

~ Juliette aka Vampire Maman