Saturday (a short story)

Saturday is here once more. Due to a busy schedule with wonderful, amazing, lovely old friends, and a busy weekend looming I’m reposting a story about our favorite Vampire Hunter, Austin Durant.

I could post for Cat-Ur-Day but I can’t find my cats. So without any more silly explanations…

Saturday (A Short Story from The Hunter Series)

Austin Durant was spending Saturday morning with a pot of coffee and a folder full of research materials. His mind was on the article he was writing, but also on the end of the school year, his latest landscaping project, and his girlfriend Elizabeth.

He stopped at the sound of the doorbell, then sent to answer. He hoped it wasn’t anyone trying to sell him anything. Two large men, dressed in black, stood at his front door. No clipboards.

Austin looked them up and down. “I’m going to assume you’re not from the Sanders campaign,” he said.

The men pushed their way through the door. Austin backed away.

“I don’t know why you guys even bothered to knock. Can I get you anything?” Now more than anytime he wished his old German Shepard Dogs Lucy and Mina were still alive. They would have ripped these guys to shreds, or at least barked a lot. After three years he still couldn’t bring himself to get another dog. But this wasn’t the time to reminisce about lost loves – he had Vampires in his house.

Who would have thought that Vampires would be at his front door at 2:37 on a Saturday afternoon in May? Sure, alright, he was a part-time, sometimes Vampire Hunter, but not on Saturday afternoon. The plan was to do a little work on an article about the California art colonies in the 1880’s, then do a little yard work, then go over to his sister’s house to eat tacos and watch Dead Pool.  Such is the life of a single History Professor slash Vampire Hunter.

“You know guys, this is a bad time for me. Why don’t you come back later, say in about a hundred years.”

The Vampires stepped forward baring their long sharp fangs. Austin started to calculate in his mind how to distract them so he could get his sword. Then the doorbell rang.

Austin put his hand up. “Excuse me for a minute guys.”

The Vampires stepped back and withdrew their fangs.

At the door stood Austin’s fifteen year old neighbor Ryan. A tabby cat with white paws stood next to him.

“Hey, Ryan. What’s up?”

“I, um, forgot my key to my house. My mom said you had a copy.”

“Sure, wait a second.” Austin looked at the Vampires. “Don’t even think about it.”

He got the key from the kitchen drawer and brought it back to Ryan. The boy thanked him then looked inside the door.

“Seriously dude, you have some creepy friends.”

“They’re not my friends,” said Austin. “Just some guys dropping off some stuff for a research project.”

“Uh, thanks for the keys.”

Ryan and the cat left and Austin turned his attention back to the Vampires. “OK guys, time to go. I have things to do, places to go, tacos to eat, and if you don’t get the hell out of my house I’ll add Vampires to kill to my list. Got it?”

The Vampires showed their fang again. Then the doorbell rang. The Vampires stepped back into the shadows.

Austin opened the door. Dave the mail carrier stood there with a package. “Hey, Austin, I just need a signature.”

“Good, I’ve been waiting for this,” said Austin as he signed the deliver slip. It was a packet of letters from the artist Julian Rix to a woman who would eventually break the artist’s heart. Austin put the letters on the table in his entry way and turned his attention back to the Vampires.

“Sorry about that. I told you this was a bad time,” he said to the Vampires.  “What do you guys want? I don’t have all day.”

The two Vampires showed their fangs and stepped towards Austin. “Listen, I don’t want any trouble. I don’t have a problem with you. I don’t even know you. In fact, my girlfriend is a Vampire.”

The Vampires hissed through their fangs, then stopped. There was a soft knock at the door.

Austin stepped back. “Excuse me, somebody is at the door.”

At the door Austin’s neighbor from down the street, a guy named Bob stood with a clip board. “Hi Austin, I have the petition to close the street on the Fourth of July.”

“Yes, I’m looking forward to it. Just let me know what I can do to help.”

“Sure thing,” said Bob. “Feel free to invite your friends.”

Austin looked around to see the Vampires had moved just behind him in the entry way. “Sure thing. Hey guys, you’re invited. Bring your favorite pot luck dish and some sparklers. It will be fun.”

After Bob left, Austin turned his full attention back to the Vampires. “I know you didn’t come here to borrow a cup of sugar. What do you want?”

The Vampires showed their fangs. “No, I’m not going to do this today. You’ve already waited almost an hour of my time. Either I kill you, you kill me, or you leave. What is it?”

The doorbell rang again. “Shit,” whispered Austin. He opened the door. There stood two college students with a clipboard. “Hey, I know you. How’s it going Tiffany?” The girl was in his California history class.

“Dr. Durant. I didn’t know you lived in this neighborhood. We’re here for the mayor’s campaign.”

“Good for you. I encourage everyone to be politically active. I think a few other groups will be out today as well.”

“Cool.”

The kids talked with Austin about politics and school. All the while Austin could sense the Vampires behind him, lurking in the shadows of his living room. He then wished the kids good luck as they went on their way.

He turned back to the Vampires who were now looking at his book shelf and talking quietly to each other.

Austin approached them. “So do you want to do this or not?”

“You have all of Steinbeck’s books, I’m impressed,” said  the taller and paler of the two Vampires. “Too bad I have to kill you.”

Then the door bell sounded again. Austin went to the front door. His neighbor Joe who lived behind him was there.

“Hey Austin. I’m fixing the fence so Sammy and Shadow can’t get out. Do you mind if I go into your yard for about a half hour?” Sammy and Shadow were two shaggy dogs of unknown breeds.

“Sure, I’ll help you out. Give me a few minutes. I’ll meet you in the back yard.”

Austin turned to the Vampires. “Guys, we’re going to have to do this later.”

The Vampires looked at him with frustration on their pale faces then slipped out the front door and vanished into the cloudy afternoon.

Well, this is the first time I’ve killed a Vampire with boredom, thought Austin. Then he put on his shoes and work gloves to meet Joe by the fence.

~ end

 

~ Juliette aka Vampire Maman

Vampire Diary: Two lips in the dark of the night

Dear Diary,

Today I went in search of tulips, those small packages, when buried underground, turn into beauty beyond compare when spring comes. It is as if by magic that they grow from the cold ground and bloom in a riot of color.

In 1636 my friend Petris traveled from Holland to my castle in the East and presented me with a box full of what looked like tear drop shaped balls of light wood. They were rare tulip bulbs, brought to me with great cost. Oh the magic of these flowers amazed me. It was beyond magic for it was real.

petris-tulip-vampire

Petris who brought me tulips. I wonder if he would be called cute by modern women? I imagine he would. I imagine his head would explode with pride. I imagine women would want his two lips (see, I can make a joke.) He would laugh. I will ask him.

I drove to a place called a nursery. There are no babies or children there, only plants and tools.

At the nursery were bins full of bulbs. There were tulips of colors I could never imagine. There were crocus, iris, and daffodil bulbs. I stood in wonder. Never before had I seen so much spring before me, waiting to be planted in the ground then come alive again, beautiful and surreal – like Vampires of the plant world.

As I chose my tulips of many colors and put them in the large metal basket on wheels I had a feeling I was being watched.

Two women stood next to me with smiles on their faces.

The one with the silver hair and young face spoke first. “Those tulips will be beautiful. You have so many. Are you planting a large space?”

“I did not think of space,” I said. I had eighty tulip bulbs in my metal basket on wheels.

“You look like you work in the garden a lot,” said the one with blonde hair and large brown eyes as she glanced at my arms.

“No, I am new to this gardening hobby. I love tulips, and other bulbs of springtime.”

“That is so cute,” said the silver haired one. “I bet you spend a lot of time at the gym.”

I smiled without fangs and made my blue eyes sparkle. That move has kept me fed for centuries.

“Very sweet,” said the blonde haired one. “Don’t forget to put them in the refrigerator for up to six weeks before you plant them. They need a hard frost to bloom well.” She touched my arm in what I have come to know is a friendly reassuring way. “You’re so cold.”

“I will warm up soon enough,” I said, knowing now what I would be doing for lunch.

After I arrived at my home I closed the curtains and put on soothing music using vinyl discs. I took the tulip bulbs in my hands and cooled them. There is no need to wait six weeks when one is a Vampire.

~ Vlad

 

Dear Diary,

I planted my tulips. While I was digging in my yard one of my neighbors came out and asked me if my cat had died.

“My cat is not dead. I am planting tulips,” I told him.

He looked surprised. “At 1:00 a.m.?”

“I will not get sunburned,” I told him.

People are weird. I do not understand them. Why would he ask me if my cat was dead?

So I wait six months for my tulips to grow and come to life, like beautiful children buried under the dirt for a long winter nap.

~ Vlad

 

Dear Diary,

Today I looked at where my tulips are planted. They are still underground.

~ Vlad

 

Dear Diary,

I was out in a public place, a bar, where there are many people. I sat at the bar listening to the talk around me. I could hear all that was said. The people spoke of their places of work. They spoke some of politicians who lust over power and say stupid things.  They mostly spoke of their romances. Then I turned. I overheard other Vampires.

They sat in a dark corner, with their heads close together. They spoke of a Vampire who had gone to a home where old people lived because it was easy. If the old person died it would not seem odd. The Vampires in the corner had removed this Vampire from the house of old people. They had taken him to the river and put a stake in his heart. They threw his ashes into the water.

I approached them. They all looked up, two males and one female. They were Vampires who hunted other Vampires. They could tell I am older and hold great power. This is not because of how I look but it is just something Vampires know.

I smiled, “Good evening.” I brushed back my golden hair. “I am Vlad.”

The looked at me in surprise. We talked. They said they were honored. I told them that now instead of ruling armies and keeping order, and keeping the law of Vampires, that I lived with a cat, and was gardening.

They laughed. They thought I was making jokes with them. I will let them think that.

The woman, a young Vampire in her 70’s told me that she didn’t expect me to be so cute. What is it with this cute? I asked her. She smiled and giggled like a school girl. There she sat in black leather with a knife strapped to her leg under her skirt, and she giggled.

We spoke of many things including the local Vampire community. I have been quiet. Most Vampire do not know I am here. Most do not know I exist anymore. After a while a young woman approached our table. I knew her. She and her friends are regulars at the bar.

She smiled at my friends then at me. Her name is Brittany. “Vlad, when you’re done here come join us,” she said. I told her that I would be there in a short time.

I reached into my satchel. “I have something for you before I go.”

“I never thought the King of Vampires would carry a man-purse,” said one of the Vampires.

“It is a satchel. Do not ever call my bag a man-purse,” I said freezing their hearts. Out of the bag I took my treasures. In front of each Vampire I set three tulip bulbs. “Plant these. They are blood red. Make sure you put the pointed side up or they will not grow. In the spring they will wake, like Vampires, beautiful and fresh.”

Then I went and joined my female friends.

In the early hours of the morning I opened my eyes in the bed of Brittany. Everything in her room was covered in flowers. The sheets on the bed were covered in flower patterns. Flowers were in vases on the furniture. Flower paintings were on the wall. I took this as a sign perhaps.

She ran her hand across my chest, up to my face, then curled her fingers in my hair and then brought her two lips to mine. “This is the last time I’m going to see you Vlad. You’re sexy and cute, but I’m getting married in a few weeks. I won’t be able to explain the punctures and bruises on my neck anymore.”

I was but a toy. But I knew that. I got what I wanted. She got what she wanted.

I left behind a dozen tulip bulbs with instructions on she could grow them in pots. I wished her well.

Walking down the street in the cool night air did not take the warmth of her body off of me. It has been that way for centuries. I am a Vampire. I am cold. But I am cute so women love me. Women love cats. Cats are cute. They love babies. Babies are cute. Babies are not always cute. I will never understand cute.

After being locked in a crypt for three hundred years I often find this modern world confusing. Yet, it is never dull. It is never uneventful.

I will miss Brittany. Her blood tasted like cherries mixed with a hint of thyme. But there will be others. There will always be others, but tonight I am out of tulips. The sun is coming up and I must get some sleep. And I will call Petris to find out what other wonders he discovered while I was locked in my crypt.

~ Vlad

 

Tulips

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Secrets, Lies, and Astounding Truths.

When you live in the shadows your life sometimes consists of secrets, lies, and astounding truths. I’m a Vampire (but you already know that) so naturally I know all about secrets, lies, and even astounding truths.

Yesterday I was walking my pup on the trail near my home and ended up joining up with one of my neighbors, an elderly man called Mike. He was out walking his Welsh Corgie mix named Goober, and after petting each others dogs, we started to talk. By the way, Mike is a Werewolf. Like Vampires, Werewolves know how to keep a secret.

Mike said he’d once been married to a woman who was cheating on him with his best friend. His mind sort of snapped and he decided he needed a change. Funds were low. He had a plan. He was feeling kind of ballsy so he hijacked a plane, took the ransom money, and jumped. After a hard landing, he turned into a wolf and ran about 200 miles to an old cabin where his college aged niece and her boyfriend met him. This was 1971.

He told his wife he was going on a fishing trip. He’d hired a private investigator to take photos of his wife and her lover. Divorce papers were sent, Mike moved south to California, and started a new life. His niece and her boyfriend finished college, got jobs, got married, and now run a successful software company in San Francisco. The seed money came from Mike.

I smiled at Mike with just a bit of fang, because I couldn’t help it. “You’re D.B. Cooper.”

Mike laughed. “I am. Darned if I haven’t become a legend, and not for being a Werewolf.”

Mystery solved. Mike’s name really isn’t Mike. It isn’t D.B. Cooper either. I promised him I wouldn’t tell. Of course I wouldn’t tell anyone his real name. You never tell a Werewolf’s secrets. No, really, you NEVER tell a Werewolf’s secrets.

So that’s what I found out yesterday. Pretty cool, in a weird way. It proves that you never know, I mean about anyone. You just never know.

~ Juliette aka Vampire Maman

 

Short Story Sunday: Saturday Afternoon

Austin Durant was spending Saturday morning with a pot of coffee and a folder full of research materials. His mind was on the article he was writing, but also on the end of the school year, his latest landscaping project, and his girlfriend Elizabeth.

He stopped at the sound of the doorbell, then sent to answer. He hoped it wasn’t anyone trying to sell him anything. Two large men, dressed in black, stood at his front door. No clipboards.

Austin looked them up and down. “I’m going to assume you’re not from the Sanders campaign,” he said.

The men pushed their way through the door. Austin backed away.

“I don’t know why you guys even bothered to knock. Can I get you anything?” Now more than anytime he wished his old German Shepard Dogs Lucy and Mina were still alive. They would have ripped these guys to shreds, or at least barked a lot. After three years he still couldn’t bring himself to get another dog. But this wasn’t the time to reminisce about lost loves – he had Vampires in his house.

Who would have thought that Vampires would be at his front door at 2:37 on a Saturday afternoon in May? Sure, alright, he was a part-time, sometimes Vampire Hunter, but not on Saturday afternoon. The plan was to do a little work on an article about the California art colonies in the 1880’s, then do a little yard work, then go over to his sister’s house to eat tacos and watch Dead Pool.  Such is the life of a single History Professor slash Vampire Hunter.

“You know guys, this is a bad time for me. Why don’t you come back later, say in about a hundred years.”

The Vampires stepped forward baring their long sharp fangs. Austin started to calculate in his mind how to distract them so he could get his sword. Then the doorbell rang.

Austin put his hand up. “Excuse me for a minute guys.”

The Vampires stepped back and withdrew their fangs.

At the door stood Austin’s fifteen year old neighbor Ryan. A tabby cat with white paws stood next to him.

“Hey, Ryan. What’s up?”

“I, um, forgot my key to my house. My mom said you had a copy.”

“Sure, wait a second.” Austin looked at the Vampires. “Don’t even think about it.”

He got the key from the kitchen drawer and brought it back to Ryan. The boy thanked him then looked inside the door.

“Seriously dude, you have some creepy friends.”

“They’re not my friends,” said Austin. “Just some guys dropping off some stuff for a research project.”

“Uh, thanks for the keys.”

Ryan and the cat left and Austin turned his attention back to the Vampires. “OK guys, time to go. I have things to do, places to go, tacos to eat, and if you don’t get the hell out of my house I’ll add Vampires to kill to my list. Got it?”

The Vampires showed their fang again. Then the doorbell rang. The Vampires stepped back into the shadows.

Austin opened the door. Dave the mail carrier stood there with a package. “Hey, Austin, I just need a signature.”

“Good, I’ve been waiting for this,” said Austin as he signed the deliver slip. It was a packet of letters from the artist Julian Rix to a woman who would eventually break the artist’s heart. Austin put the letters on the table in his entry way and turned his attention back to the Vampires.

“Sorry about that. I told you this was a bad time,” he said to the Vampires.  “What do you guys want? I don’t have all day.”

The two Vampires showed their fangs and stepped towards Austin. “Listen, I don’t want any trouble. I don’t have a problem with you. I don’t even know you. In fact, my girlfriend is a Vampire.”

The Vampires hissed through their fangs, then stopped. There was a soft knock at the door.

Austin stepped back. “Excuse me, somebody is at the door.”

At the door Austin’s neighbor from down the street, a guy named Bob stood with a clip board. “Hi Austin, I have the petition to close the street on the Fourth of July.”

“Yes, I’m looking forward to it. Just let me know what I can do to help.”

“Sure thing,” said Bob. “Feel free to invite your friends.”

Austin looked around to see the Vampires had moved just behind him in the entry way. “Sure thing. Hey guys, you’re invited. Bring your favorite pot luck dish and some sparklers. It will be fun.”

After Bob left, Austin turned his full attention back to the Vampires. “I know you didn’t come here to borrow a cup of sugar. What do you want?”

The Vampires showed their fangs. “No, I’m not going to do this today. You’ve already waited almost an hour of my time. Either I kill you, you kill me, or you leave. What is it?”

The doorbell rang again. “Shit,” whispered Austin. He opened the door. There stood two college students with a clipboard. “Hey, I know you. How’s it going Tiffany?” The girl was in his California history class.

“Dr. Durant. I didn’t know you lived in this neighborhood. We’re here for the mayor’s campaign.”

“Good for you. I encourage everyone to be politically active. I think a few other groups will be out today as well.”

“Cool.”

The kids talked with Austin about politics and school. All the while Austin could sense the Vampires behind him, lurking in the shadows of his living room. He then wished the kids good luck as they went on their way.

He turned back to the Vampires who were now looking at his book shelf and talking quietly to each other.

Austin approached them. “So do you want to do this or not?”

“You have all of Steinbeck’s books, I’m impressed,” said  the taller and paler of the two Vampires. “Too bad I have to kill you.”

Then the door bell sounded again. Austin went to the front door. His neighbor Joe who lived behind him was there.

“Hey Austin. I’m fixing the fence so Sammy and Shadow can’t get out. Do you mind if I go into your yard for about a half hour?” Sammy and Shadow were two shaggy dogs of unknown breeds.

“Sure, I’ll help you out. Give me a few minutes. I’ll meet you in the back yard.”

Austin turned to the Vampires. “Guys, we’re going to have to do this later.”

The Vampires looked at him with frustration on their pale faces then slipped out the front door and vanished into the cloudy afternoon.

Well, this is the first time I’ve killed a Vampire with boredom, thought Austin. Then he put on his shoes and work gloves to meet Joe by the fence.

~ end

 

As with most of the Sunday Short Stories, this was written in about a half hour. And yes, I am in a roller rink on Sunday morning doing this. It is amazing how weird organ music can put a writer in the zone. ~ Juliette

For all of the Austin and Elizabeth stories click here.

 

 

Vampire Diary: Sharp Dressed Man (and pizza)

Dear Diary,

What is this thing on Friday nights they call pizza? I do not understand.

~ Vlad

 

 

Dear Diary,

I stood upon the cliff, the wind in my hair, eyes closed, thinking of long ago when I ruled all that I could see. I opened my eyes to find myself nodding hello to a man walking his dog.

Another man passed on a bicycle wearing skin-tight pants. It was not attractive.

There is peace in the land, at least in this little stretch of land I now call home. It is a neighborhood. I have neighbors. They are not powerful. They are not concerned with power.

One of my neighbors mentioned a debate among those who wish to rule. This debate will be next week. Then he said there would be a drinking game. When certain men who wish to be powerful say certain words everybody drinks. Is it so bad that people must drink to forget about what horrors might come to pass if these men come into power?

But it isn’t just men. There are women too. Scary women. Scary women who yell, but seem to yield little true power. Where are their men? Where are any true men in this game. Where are men who are brave and true? They should not talk. They should fight. To the death. With swords and knives like real men.

I do not understand. I will try to stay away, or drink excessive amounts of alcohol.

The cat has no opinion on the matter. She does not care.

~ Vlad

 

 

Dear Diary,

I went into my front yard today to inspect a plant called Bird of Paradise. The exotic flowers do indeed look like exotic birds. I shouldn’t take joy in such a trivial natural event, but I found myself in wonder.

One of the women of the blue house down the street greeted me.  Her name is Joy. She is always happy. Her eyes went from the top of my head, down to my feet, then back up to my face. It made me feel as if she was inspecting a slab of meat hanging from a butcher’s window.

“You look sharp today Vlad,” she said to me.

My fangs were not showing. I did not understand.

“You always dress so well, nice jacket, jeans that show off those cute buns, natural blonde highlights. You’re so cute. All the women say they could just eat you up,” she told me with a grin full of large white teeth.

If my heart had been beating it would have skipped a beat. What sort of woman was this who would tell me that she was going to eat me? What horrors have I yet to discover in this quiet neighborhood?

Why did Joy talk about buns? Was she thinking of making me into a sandwich?

I excused myself and went back inside my house. Fear isn’t a normal feeling for me, but there was a slight tinge of it along with rage and confusion.

I was starting to feel like a prisoner in my own home.

~ Vlad

 

 

Dear Diary,

I was out tonight on a quest for blood. I found it. I drank deeply from the necks of two beautiful women, then left them with smiles on their faces.  I suppose the power of cute has its advantages.

I was relieved that neither one of them wanted to eat me up.

~ Vlad

 

 

Dear Diary,

Gillian, my Vampire lover, was here in my bed tonight. I ran my fingertips over her cold skin and kissed her shoulders and neck. She purred like a kitten and kissed me.

“What sort of women eat the flesh of men?” I thought she’d know the answer.

She gave me a confused look and said, “Vlad, tell me what happened.”

I told her of the conversation. Gillian said nothing, but laughed out loud, then took me in her arms and I belonged to her for the rest of the night.

~ Vlad

 

 

Dear Diary,

I looked up cannibalism on a place called Wikipedia. There have been only a few cases of men who eat human flesh in this area since the Donner party in the late 1840’s. Most of the cannibals have not been women. This frightened me for women are far more dangerous than men.

I will watch, and as I did in days of old, I will protect my people. I will protect my neighborhood.

I am the Vampire King. My people will not be eaten. They will not eat my cats. They will be stopped. I will not be cute.

~ Vlad

 

 

Dear Diary,

Civilization has changed in so many ways, yet in so many ways it stays the same.

I do not remember a time when there has not been war. I do not remember a time when fools have not ruled great countries. I do not remember a time when ignorance has not been worshiped over knowledge.

I do not remember a time when I was called cute. I looked in a mirror and caught my reflection, which if difficult unless I am completely still and looking into my own eyes and the lighting is just right. I am attractive. Women have always thought so.

I look away from my haunting reflection. Masculine beauty is a gift and a burden. It is something I can be undead with.

Gillian came over with a large flat box.

“I brought pizza. We can eat it tonight and watch Grimm.”

I opened the box. There in the box was a large flat round of dough, like a tart, with blood-red sauce and round blood-red pieces of meat. I took in the haunting fragrance. I agreed. We should eat pizza.

I took two goblets out and filled them with spiced blood.

Then I fed the cats. They do not eat pizza.

Gillian, my love, said, “Life is good.”

Yes, life is good, even for the undead.

~ Vlad

 

oscar_artistic copy

 

Keep checking back for more installments. Click on the links below for read the entire riveting story. And yes, put down your coffee or you’ll spit on the screen.

Vampire Diary

#1. Vampire Diary: The Beginning

#2. Vampire Diary: Intervention

#3. Vampire Diary: Game Day

#4. Vampire Diary: Feeling Alive

#5. Vampire Diary: Blood Red

#6. Vampire Diary: Embroiled in a Dream (and still cute)

#7. Vampire Diary: Something I do Understand

#8. Vampire Diary: Modern Worlds

#9. Vampire Diary: White Wedding

#10. Vampire Diary: Under the Beautiful Skye

 

 

 

Kissed by a Vampire

Vampire Diary: Blood Red

Dear Diary,

Blood red roses. Silk sheets black as a Siberian night. Skin as white and cold as snow. Cold as death and as beautiful as a winter wind, Gillian lay in my bed beside me. She was all mine.

Whispering my name, she pulled me close, scraping fangs across my shoulder and nails down my back. Yes, there are even things that render a Vampire Prince such as myself powerless.

Yes, that thing is called a doorbell. The doorbell rang. I wasn’t expecting anyone or anything.

Opening the window I looked out into the yard. My neighbor was standing there among the crimson roses. She looked up at me.

“Oh my God, you’re built. Six pack abs and everything,” she said.

I wished I’d put on my robe. “What do you want?”

“The garden tour is today. Get dressed and come down to help.”

I vaguely remember her mentioning a garden tour. Several homes in the neighborhood were being featured. It was a charity event for the local school. I declined, though my garden is spectacular.

I made a valid excuse, “I have company.”

“You lucky dog! Bring her along. We have coffee and muffins.”

Then she waved with her fingers and left. I went back to my waiting lover, who’d by then fallen asleep.

I don’t even like muffins. Why did she call me a dog? I do not understand.

~ Vlad

——————–

Dear Diary,

For centuries I lived in fine castles and estates with hundreds and even thousands of acres. I was the prince who ruled over forests and field. Hundred were under my command for my personal use.

Beautiful young men and women from the town would be brought to me every night so that I might enjoy their blood. They feared me and obeyed me. In turn, they desired me and wanted to be among my favorites. They were drawn to what they feared and desired the most – and that was me.

Now…

The neighbor who thinks I’m “hot” doesn’t know that I’ve feasted on her blood several times when her husband was away. She has no fear of me. Desire? No matter how attracted she is to me she will never be unfaithful to her husband. She could seduce me but I could not seduce her.

That makes no sense. What is the world coming to? She believes me to be the most attractive male she has ever met but she would never follow me except to maybe the grocery store or…

Stop. Vlad, you made the choice to be here. You made the choice to leave the old dark ways and move on. But to what end? To what end?

My lover Gillian told me, “Vlad, this isn’t the 16th Century.” She has told me over and over and over and over. For Gillian, embracing the modern world was easy. For me it is difficult at best.

The cat is looking at me as if to say, “dare me to walk over the keyboard.”

I still don’t like muffins. I threw the ones left here yesterday over the fence for the other neighbor’s dog to eat. He likes muffins.

~ Vlad

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Dear Diary,

Cats have their own doctors. I do not understand this world in which I live.

~ Vlad

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Dear Diary,

A turkey vulture, buzzard, Cathartes aura, sits on a tree outside my window. He is known for his grace in the wind and for following death. Maybe that is why he sits near me.

Gillian said I have become morose. Yet, she has asked for a drawer and a space in my bedroom closet.

I asked the women in my neighborhood about that over cocktails tonight. It was a neighborhood thing. I was invited. The women knew what Gillian wants. Mortal women know what a Vampire woman desires. They tell me it is “serious,” then they giggle like school girls. My head spins. I need blood.

Later that night before Gillian returned I went out to hunt. It is so easy these days. I miss the hunt and the fear. On the other hand I fear Gillian. I want her, but now I fear her. I can’t explain that any more than I can explain why I allow a cat to live in my house.

A modern world with a Modern Vampire. I am over my head. Maybe head over heels. It is all so confusing.

~ Vlad