“My education was neglected, yet I was passionately fond of reading.”
~ Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley, Frankenstein; Or, the Modern Prometheus
I missed the entire 19th and 20th Centuries. So much happened. I am, how do the young Vampires say, clueless on so many cultural references.
When one is imprisoned in a crypt for three hundred years there is a great void in culture.
Books. Book changed. I completely missed Daniel Defoe by a few years. Of course I’d read The Ingenious Nobleman Sir Quixote of La Mancha and all of the ancient Greek tales, but where I lived, there were rarely anything considered a what is known now as a novel.
I have been reading many books over the past several years.
I started a new book today. It is called Frankenstein. I understand it was written by a young woman. Sometimes one must read light fluff because it is recommended by friends. Understanding modern women is also a good thing. I hope this book will clear a few items up.
I continue to read Frankenstein. It is not what I imagined it would be.
What is that expression my love Gillian always uses? Yes, I remember. Holy shit.
Last night I ventured out to my favorite local night time meeting place. It is owned by a woman named Cassie who is both beautiful and smart. She could have also written Frankenstein. I had planned on asking her if she had heard of Frankenstein but there was no chance.
My friend Randolpho and my love Gillian joined me. We are all Vampires, and know that Cassie’s bar is popular with a few other local Vampires as well. Cassie and the other patrons have no idea what we are. We do not plan to tell them.
All there were having a good night until three men wearing black coats and hats walked in. They looked around, then one looked directly at me and said, “Target,” to his friends.
At first I wanted to tell him that this was a bar and Target was about three miles away, then I realized that I was their target. I locked eyes with him and knew they were Vampire Hunters.
“Don’t look them in the eyes,” he yelled and brought out a large knife. As they came towards me I realized they also had guns. Why does everyone have guns?
I stood up from my seat and yelled for everyone in the club to get down. Randolpho and two other Vampires were like Shepard dogs and herded almost everyone behind the bar and into the kitchen and storage room. Gillian stood next to me.
One of the men, the tallest one, who had long brown hair, pulled out his gun. I grabbed his hand and twisted his arm behind his back and knocked him to the floor. Their leader, a shorter man of great thickness, headed towards Gillian with a sword. I turned and grabbed his arm with my left hand and the blade of the sword with my right. I could feel it cut into me. Then I twisted it out of his arm. I did not see a third man behind me as he stabbed me in the neck. I could hear screaming from behind the bar.
“You will not hurt a soul and you will not take me down,” I said.
“You’ll die tonight Vampire King, along with the rest of your friends,” said the man who stabbed me.
“No,” I said.
As the blood poured from my neck, it was funny, because all I could think of was how I’d just gotten that blood about an hour before then at an odd show at an art gallery.
We fought as I have not fought in centuries, with Gillian beside me, and the other Vampires working to protect the fragile regular Humans. I do not know exactly what happened but suddenly a knife went into my chest, it might have been a sword. A knife went into my check and cut a hole in me, starting at my heart and working down, as long as my forearm, maybe a foot long.
Then all went dark.
I awoke in a strange place, like something out of Mary Shelly’s nightmare.
A serious looking man wearing white hovered over me. “What year where you born?”
“1342,” I said, barely getting out the sound.
“1982,” I could hear Gillian say, but I could not see her. “He’s thirty-six.”
“Do you know his blood type? We couldn’t tell. It was as if someone mixed several types together.” I heard more voices asking questions. One said they would have to give me blood. That sounded good to me. I heard Gillian say my blood type was A+. I do not know what that means. I have human blood and I have my own Vampire blood. It is red. It is blood.
I tried to sit but found myself with wired attached to me. A needle was in my arm which was attached to more machines. Bright lights were in my eyes. People were all around me and asking me questions I could not understand or answer.
I could hear their frantic voices saying that I was cold and my heart was not beating. They said I had no blood. Then I felt electricity surge through my body. I jerked.
I could hear Randolpho’s voice somewhere. “Vlad, make your heart beat friend. Don’t let them think you’re dead.”
Needles went in and out of my skin and everything underneath it. I could not understand what people were saying.
Gillian said to someone, “Randolpho is his first cousin. I am his fiance. We are all the family he has. Everyone else is dead.” Dead is a relative term when one speaks of Vampires, but she was right. As far as I knew everyone in my family is dead except my sister who is undead and thousands of miles away.
Then it happened, as I lay on the table, hooked to machines, my arms pierced by needles, covered with blood, splayed out like a hog ready to be cut into bacon and ribs, it happened…
“Even like this he is so cute.”
“He is so cute.”
“He is beautiful, but so handsome.”
“I’ve never seen anyone here this cute.”
“Oh my, who is this man? He is absolutely gorgeous.”
Cute. Even in my darkest hour I am called cute. I do not understand this cute. Babies, puppies, kittens, and teenager are cute. I am a Vampire King in a Frankenstein like nightmare. I am in the lab, hooked up like the creature and they talk about how cute I am. I do not understand.
Then one put her hand on my forehead, “Hey cutie. Can you hear me?”
I opened my eyes and smiled a bit. “Of course. Where am I?”
I could feel her melt a bit due to my charm. “The hospital,” she said. “I’m Doctor Davis. We’re here to help.” Then she turned to her companions and said, “How is he talking? His heart isn’t beating.”
I was weak but I put my hand on her arm. “Dear Doctor Davis. Please leave me alone with my cousin and my fiancée for one minute. In case I am dead I need to have a few last words.” I looked her in the eye and she could not do anything but go away. Vampires can do that. We have that magic touch (even now I can make a slight joke.)
Gillian and Randolpho helped me become detached from the machines and wrapped me in a blanket and put me in a wheel chair. When someone would approach us Gillian would put up her hand and say, “Let us pass.” And of course they let us pass, and none of them remembered seeing us leave, for we are Vampires who move silently and make memories vanish.
When we arrived home I lay in my bed feeling more dead than undead. The pain of the Vampire hunter blades was made worse by poison. My hand, my neck, and my torso were stitched up. I was full of new blood, but still weak. I ask Gillian if she can heat up a blanket in the dryer for me.
I am exhausted just trying to write of this event.
We are unfashioned creatures, but half made up, if one wiser, better, dearer than ourselves – such a friend ought to be – do not lend his aid to perfectionate our weak and faulty natures. ~ Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley, Frankenstein; Or, the Modern Prometheus
News travels fast of a hero who fought off three crazy men with knives and guns to save about fifty terrified people. Vampire friends and my neighbors all came by to see how I am doing. Cassie and her husband Justin brought beautiful red flowers. Gillian and Randolpho were the perfect hostess and host.
Men from law enforcement came and spoke with me.
They asked questions. I told them that I remembered nothing.
Then, I do not know why, I quoted a line from the book Frankenstein. “I see by your eagerness, and the wonder and hope which your eyes express, my friend, that you expect to be in formed of the secret with which I am acquainted. That cannot be.”
I gave them a small uncomfortable laugh and told them that I could not think today. They said they understood and asked me to call them if I remember anything.
The men who attacked us were not apprehended that night. They will be found, but not by local law enforcement.
None the less Gillian and I insisted Randolpho stay with us for a few days. We are fierce and dangerous Vampires but even we have to watch those who do not understand us and wish us harm in their ignorance.
But now I sleep, and rest, and quickly heal as only a Vampire can.
Tomorrow, or maybe next week we will find our peace, and with any luck discover books that do not scare even Vampires.
“I shall commit my thoughts to paper, it is true; but that is a poor medium for the communication of feeling. I desire the company of a man who could sympathize with me, whose eyes would reply to mine.”
~ Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley, Frankenstein; Or, the Modern Prometheus