“Love, huh, yeah! What is it good for? Absolutely nothing!” I sang in a slightly slurred speech. “Hey, Vicktooor. When did you write that song?”
“Maybe I shouldn’t have offered you alcohol,” Victor reflected doubtfully while watching his cup. “And I didn’t write that. I think it was Edwin Starr that sung it. It was war, by the way, not love.”
“I-isn’t it always? Hiccup.” I let out a laugh.
“Did you honestly just say hiccup?”
“Did you honestly…face!” I put my hand in Victor’s face.
Victor was funny, this whole thing was funny. Where was I, again? I didn’t entirely remember much at that moment.
“Ok, Jane, you are absolutely drunk.”
“I’m not dunk.” I said, realizing I had used the wrong word. “Hah…I said dunk!”
“As cute as it is to see you like this, excuse me but I’m going use some of my vampiric powers to clear your mind.”
“You’re gonna what?”
Before I could do much more than look at him blankly, Victor waved his hand in front of my eyes. As his fingers waggled in front of my face, my vision seemed to turn red for a second. In an instant, my mind started to clear. The backlash was instantaneous. It was a sinking feeling as reality suddenly rushed back to me.
“You better now?” Victor asked.
“Yeah…” I croaked, suddenly feeling embarrassed and trying to cover up my face. “I’m sorry about trying to feel your chest earlier.”
“Well, you did offer me the chance to reciprocate.” Victor chuckled.
“Ah! Don’t remind me!” I protested, but after a few moments I turned an eye up toward him. “If you’re into me like you said you were, why didn’t you take the chance?”
Victor gave a simple smile. “Because I care about you too much to disrespect you that way, especially when you’re drunk. I care for you, the person, not simply your body.”
“Oh,” I responded, speechlessly lost when trying to find the next words to say.
While the concert had already been over for two hours, the pair of us had ended up chatting deep into the night. Victor had gotten a drink to unwind after the rough show. He had offered me a mixed drink from his full-service bar, so I took a Bahama Mama. We ended up sitting on the couch casually talking and drinking until, three Bahama Mamas later, I found myself drunk clutching to Victor.
Meanwhile, Samantha was still unconscious, various colored permanent marker scratched all over her skin. We didn’t do anything particularly hateful like drawing genitals on her face, but I still wouldn’t be surprised if she called off school tomorrow.
“Tomorrow!” I suddenly stood up and yelled, pulling out my cell phone. “Shit! It’s a school night.”
I was supposed to head home immediately after the concert, but the shock of meeting Victor here had caused me to forget entirely. My phone had been on silent and, during the intervening two hours, I had received nine phone calls and a series of increasingly angrier texts from my mother. My face started to whiten as I read the last one.
“Victor…” I said in a high-pitched voice. “How does it feel to be flayed alive?”
“Hmm… I’d say somewhere between being at a Nickelback concert and actually being a member of Nickelback.” Victor shuttered. “Why do you ask?”
“I need to get going. Like, an hour ago.” I stood as I spoke, putting my cell phone away.
I’d rather avoid my mother’s wrath until I got home, so I decided to not send her a message at this point. What were the chances she’d have her one night off be the night I’m stuck out at a concert? I didn’t even know if the bus was still running at this point. I might have already missed my chance at going home.
“I’ll give you a ride home; it’s fine.”
“You have a ride?”
“You’re asking a millionaire pop star if he has a ride?”
“No, well, I just thought being on tour you might have like a tour bus or something.”
Victor nodded. “Ah, yeah, well, as I said, I’ll be staying here. So, I’ve already rented a loft and gotten a car. It isn’t like I haven’t already lived in Fairmont before.”
“Okay, then.” I brushed myself off while mentally preparing myself for the berating.
“Do you need help with Samantha?” Victor asked, looking down at my friend whom we had set down in a recliner.
“No, I’m good.” I laughed, grabbing Samantha and picking her up in a princess carry.
Victor was looking at me with odd eyes. “I-is that normal? You being able to pick her up with ease?”
“Huh? Ah, now that you mention it, she feels really light. I’ve had to drag her unconscious ass home on more than one occasion, and vice versa, but usually it takes a bit more dragging.”
“I see…” Victor seemed to be thinking about something, which made me a little nervous.
“What, what is it?” I asked apprehensively.
It was odd, wasn’t it? I didn’t feel even a little strain. Samantha would burn me on the spot if I ever acknowledged this, but she wasn’t exactly light in proportion to me. She was taller and had a curvier frame. By all accounts, she should have twenty to thirty pounds on me, yet I was lifting her with ease.
“It’s probably nothing.” Victor gave me another pleasant smile.
It made my heart flutter a bit. In the past, he never really smiled that much. It was nice to see him in a happier place than he was back then. However, his smile was becoming incredibly dangerous. Each time I looked at it I felt a fluttering in my stomach and my face heating. I couldn’t even believe I had been trying to grab his chest earlier.
“Alright, let’s go!” I declared, needing the cold air to cool me down.
“Actually…” Victor put some keys in my right hand, which was currently wrapped around Samantha’s knees. “My car is the most expensive one in the lot. I need to finish up a few quick things and then I promise I’ll be right there.”
“Alright…” I sighed, for some reason feeling a little disappointed he wasn’t going to walk with me to the car.
Why was Victor always so easy to talk to? Should I kiss him? Wait, where did that thought come from?! Those were the kinds of things running through my head as I made my way to the private parking area.
A concert in a small city like Fairmont was kind of a big deal. We didn’t really have things like parking meters or parking structures. Instead, the concert was held at the community college’s auditorium. Even then, the overflow of cars was enormous and the auditorium was filled to the brim. No one knew why the Demetrius tour ended in such a small, out-of-the-way place, even if he claimed it was his hometown. Well, at least I knew the reason now.
“A superstar likes me.” I had to get the words out loud with a giggle. “A cute boy likes-“
There was a flash in my mind of the other boys that had found their ways into my life. Andrew, Rune, Stephan, Alex, Daniel, Daltom, and Christopher. Each boy was cute in his own way, and impossibly hot by the standards of any high school girl, which were surely the highest standards I could imagine. Over the last month, I had gotten closer to each of them while finding out about their somewhat dangerous secrets.
Andrew was an angel and Rune was a devil. Stephan was a reanimated dead person, while Alex was a succubus. Daniel was a werewolf. Daltom was a time traveler, Christopher was a ghost who fell in love with me when he was alive and is now inhabiting the body of Mr. Xavier, my current English teacher. And, of course, Victor was an immortal vampire.
When I thought about being with Victor, I realized that my heart hurt a bit. It almost felt like guilt. What about the other boys in my life?
What about them? A dark part of my mind muttered. It’s not like they have any real interest in me.
We were friends; just friends. There was no reason to be getting worked up about it. Yeah, sure, Daniel had that weird alpha imprinting thing going on, but that wasn’t real love. Christopher wanted me, but the attraction never felt more than skin deep. For all intents and purposes, only Victor expressed any real interest in me. Yet, he was old enough to be my father. Well, technically, my great-great-great-grandfather.
“I guess it’d be the Porsche, huh?”
As I played a game of ‘one of these cars isn’t like the others’, the natural choice was a silver Porsche Spyder. As I moved up to the car, my only thought was that Samantha would die when she realized she had passed out and missed the chance to ride in a Porsche. Don’t get me wrong, it’s a pretty car, but those kinds of things were more her style. For me, a car just had to get you from point A to point B. I didn’t see the appeal. An $18,000 entry-level Sudan was perfectly fine to me.
I wrestled with putting the front seat forward so that I could squeeze the unconscious Samantha into the back. It was not the simplest thing to do. Eventually, I ended up lying Samantha on the back of both seats tilted forward and then rolled her down the slope until she landed in the back seat.
“Man, she doesn’t wake for anything.” I muttered to myself.
“Jane?” An unfamiliar voice came from behind me.
I nearly leaped out of my skin as I spun around. I had been completely consumed with putting Samantha in the back. As a result, I hadn’t even fathomed someone being anywhere close to me. That person was standing in the shadows, a tall form with a slightly arrogant sounding voice.
Then he stepped out into the light, his glasses gleaming in the lamplight. It took me a moment to have any recognition of the person in front of me.
“Ah! That’s right, you’re, um… Allan, right?”
“Jane! It is you.” Allan took several quick steps towards me and I immediately could see that he was slightly disheveled.
His hair was a bit messy. His shirt was untucked. He looked like he had bags under his eyes.
“What are you doing here, Alla-“
“Never mind that!” Allan grabbed my shoulders. “We need to leave!”
“Come with me. We have to go!” He pulled on my shoulders, but I immediately pulled back, shaking him from my grip.
“Out! Anywhere. Just away from here!”
“Out? Like on some kind of date?”
“A date?” Allan looked blankly for a moment before shaking himself out of it. “Yes, a date. That would suffice. Please be my date for the moment.”
“What? Um… I mean, I’m flattered, but…”
“Ridiculous.” Allan grabbed his neck, shaking his head. “You don’t get it. I’ve been interested in you for some time.”
“For mating reasons,” Allan added.
“Sex!” I shook my head. “Ah, that’s too fast. Too fast!”
“That doesn’t matter right now.” Allan growled in frustration. “What matters is that you come with me.”
He grabbed for my wrist again while pulling something glowing from his own. Immediately, fear shot through me. All those supernatural boys, then suddenly a real guy with some clear issues was going to jump me for sex? I dodged his hand and leapt into the Porsche. I pushed the button and started the car. Thank God Victor had keyless start. This girl wasn’t going to be brought down by a horror movie cliché!
I did not wait. Hitting the pedal, I peeled out of the parking lot at forty miles an hour. It wasn’t the first time I had ever driven, but my license was still fairly new. The beast purring under me was more power than I used to. As I left Allan in my dust, I suddenly found myself getting excited at the powerfully purring engine. So, this was what Samantha saw in it. With an 800 horsepower V-8 engine, aren’t speed limits merely a suggestion?
I swerved the car and screamed as something landed hard on the hood. Oh, God, I had hit something already? Or was it Allan running down my car like a freaking terminator? Either case, I was thoroughly freaked out. What happened? Is that a shadow?
A darkness seemed to surge around the car. In a second, it started to squeeze through the cracks, sliding in from the joints of the convertible hood. The smoky shadow had a three-dimensional form, and in a few moments in coalesced into a body. I gave a deep breath as I realized I recognized that body.
“Jane. I cleared your mind, but you’re still technically drunk. I didn’t expect you to go joy-riding when I gave you my keys.” Victor said sternly with a hard look.
I finally pulled over while feeling a little bad. Victor actually seemed genuinely upset by this.
“There was… some guy.”
“Some guy?” Victor asked. “I saw you leave the parking lot, but I didn’t see anyone else there.”
“That is…” I lowered my head. “I’m sorry I took your Porsche.”
After a few more moments under his cold look, Victor sighed and put a smile back on. “I’m not really upset. I just don’t want you to get hurt. I believe you; if there was a guy, there was a guy. You did the right thing. Just stay safe, and I’ll make sure to escort you to the parking lot next time.”
“Next time?” I asked. “There will be a next time?”
“I truly hope so. I hope there are many next times for us.” Victor smiled as we switched places and he started driving the Porsche.
Even though he drove it much safer than I did, it was only about two minutes before I made it home. Mom was standing in the doorway. Ah, she looked really pissed. The surprise on her face when I got out of a Porsche only diminished the anger in her eyes for a slight moment.
“Young lady!” She yelled as I walked up. “I let you out of your grounding a day early and this is how you repay me? Another three weeks! No, ten weeks! Coming home in a Porsche with some gothy looking boy isn’t helping your case either!”
It took me a second to realize that Victor had joined me as I walked up to mom.
“I’m sorry, Joy. I’m Demetrius. It was my fault your daughter was late. She had won a special prize, and it took longer than expected.”
“Demetrius! And he knows my name!” my mother reacted as expected, but then she calmed herself. “Be that as it may, my daughter still should have texted me!”
“Ah, you’re right about that!” Victor gave a wry smile while scratching the back of his neck.
What the heck! You were supposed to be on my side, Victor! Don’t be agreeing with my mom!
“Wait, a second.” Joy suddenly started looking at Victor questioningly. “Do I know you from somewhere?”
“Actually, now that you mention it…” Victor snapped his fingers and then waved his hand in front of my mom’s face. “It’s probably best if you didn’t remember me. You look tired. Go get some sleep. And Jane arrived on time as expected, so don’t be too hard on her.”
Once Victor dropped his hand, Joy looked like she snapped out of a hypnosis as she shook her head. “Ah, that’s right, I am tired. I’m going to go up first. I’ll see you tomorrow, sweetie.”
My mom’s angry looks dissipated like smoke and she put on a happy and tired smile before turning around and heading back into the house.
“Did you just brainwash my mom!” I demanded.
“Ah, well, sorry for th-“
“I freaking love you!” Before I could help myself, I threw my arms around him.
“Ahhh!” Victor seemed to tighten up a bit, and so I let go of him.
Victor gave a tight smile, his face seeming a little white. “You surprised me, is all. I’m just feeling a little thirsty. It’s been a long night.”
“Oh, well, do you want to come inside and get a drink?” I asked.
Victor’s smile tightened even more as he watched me carefully. After a moment, he patted me on the head.
“Be careful what you offer.” Victor gave a forced chuckle. “One of these days I might just take you up on it.”
I watched him with a confused expression as he turned away and headed back to his Porsche.
“I’ll get her home safe, I promise. Trust me, she doesn’t make me thirst… like you.”
Victor got in the car and I finally turned around to head back into my house after waving him goodbye and counting how lucky I had been this night. It wasn’t until he was speeding away and I was taking off my shoes in the entryway when the meaning of his words finally caught up with me.
I had just unintentionally offered him a meal and the meal was me. Part of me, a small part, couldn’t help but wish that maybe he had said yes. Then the logical part returned, and I realized that there is nothing sexy about being eaten by a vampire.
“If there was, then blood donation drives would be way more popular,” I muttered to myself as I headed up to my room, found my bed, and laid down while fantasizing about having my neck sucked.
Well, if you took out the puncture wounds, it was pretty hot. It wasn’t always Victor I imagined doing the sucking. Sometimes it was Andrew, or Daniel, or Rune, or even Alex. All the boys got a turn. Then, Allan popped into my fantasy as well. He really was an attractive boy. Even if he came off tonight as scary and a little dangerous. He was a Hawtness, one of the most attractive boys at Fairmont High, after all.
No! There would be no more boys in my life. I’d had enough. I fell asleep with those thoughts in my head.