"Doesn't this city have any fucking homeless, damn…" that was Eva, she was always complaining. It was her annoying ass way of dealing with things.
I was smoking a cigarette I got off some kid in the alley; with my looks he was more than eager to give it to me. Men are so fucking sad. I didn't even have to act the part.
It's raining so hard, coming down out here and the water is starting to make my cigarette sag. With each drag less smoke comes out until I finally give it up and toss it off to the side. As it collides with the wall the embers flare out and die in the rain.
Eva was walking right next to me, she's a doe eyed little thing with puffy cheeks and auburn hair. I thought that she dressed like a hobo, all of the layering of clothes and all. A thick brown coat, long thick stockings and a knee length leather skirt that flared out at the sides.
It was smart of her to dress like that, with the way things were going currently. We hadn't eaten in a while and the less we ate, the colder and paler our bodies became.
When a vampire eats their skin becomes a rosy pink color.
Behind her was Daunte, it was funny. I never really thought about a black vampire before I met him, with the exception of Blackula or other abominations like that. But Daunte, was an okay guy to have around, he used to joke about getting gold fangs. At times, though, he would get fired up and he was always the first one who wanted to fight and he is a force to be reckoned with.
Beau was the kind sensitive one in our little merry band. He pretty much tried his best to support everyone in their own personal…bullshit. He was a tall skinny man with short spiked hair and green eyes. In all of the time I had known him I never once saw him fight or even so much as got the idea that he could in someway harm someone. .
"Chin up everyone, we'll find something soon." That was Erin, she acted as leader and pep squad. Of course she only looked the part of the latter. Most of the time she spent encouraging others and keeping up the group morale. She was skinny with slight curves; my guess is that she was about sixteen or seventeen when she got turned. But even then, he was tall with long dirty blonde hair and a long face. Something in her blue eyes reminded me of what I thought a mother should be, not that I ever had a good mother model to compare.
We had been traveling together only for two weeks, like I said before, and for a week and half of that time, we hadn't had a decent bite. To make matters worse it was raining, rain equals no sense of smell for vampires. That's how we hunt, how we find prey.
Cold and wet. There's nothing that you can do to keep warm because you don't have blood.
Eva curls her arms tighter around herself, "We're just going to freeze to death out here."
Beau shakes his head, "When the rain lets up we'll be fine."
"This is fucking Seattle, the rain doesn't let up," I explain. Tendrils of blonde hair cling to the sides of my face now.
Erin gets to her feet, "We get some place dry then…" she stands and starts to move down the side of the buildings to shield herself from the rain. Daunte and I come up next, following her. Eva and Beau are on their feet next.
Beau comes right up behind me, "You said that Gwen sired you… even though she stays mostly on the Eastern seaboard…" when I didn't answer he should have known to shut up. "Gwen is like a legend, a few years back I heard someone say she was there when Christ was crucified!"
Most times the older the vamp, the more respect they command, but Gwen had even more than that going for her. There was no way in Hell I was going to tell.
" First of all, she's Native American," I paused, "And second she's only one thousand," I had to walk off from him, his over enthused schoolboy routine pissed me off.
Suddenly I freeze. My nose caught a hint of something metallic. I could smell it. I was sure this time. In the past week I had thought that I had smelled blood several times but it was just wishful thinking. I would be smelling the rust on a chain link fence or the overly high iron content in some water. My sense of smell was playing tricks on me.
I turn and grab Eva, she was the nearest one to me now, "Huh?" she asks.
"Do you smell that?" I ask shaking her slightly.
She tilts her head up to one side some and sniffs the air, "Blood mixed with…something…"
My knees splash in a puddle as I kneel before a mound of trash bags. Blood. Somewhere nearby. Maybe someone buried a body or there is a spent package of meat. But then again I can tell this is Human blood mixed with a smell of something I can't quite place.
Daunte turns to face me, "Aw, damn it, Master Race has lost her fucking mind!" he calls me Master Race because of the blonde hair and blue eyes, I'd always thought I looked too German. He goes to pull me away from my digging but I shove hum back.
Beau gets down right in front of me. "Claudia," the whelp moved closer to me to look me in the eyes, "do you have the blood craze?"
Beau was always worried, mostly about me.
Blood craze is what they call it when we go without blood for too long and you lose your mind. But they should know better, a vampire can last a full month without eating. This is one of the few things Gwen tells me. Even after that month you can hibernate to keep from going off your rocker. I wonder now if blood craze might be Sabrina's problem.
Halfway through the second bag a bottle of spoiled milk that's turned over surges over the edge of my knees. I shudder at the smell, its too close for the rain to drown it out. Then I realized in all of this time the blood isn't getting any closer. Maybe what I am looking for is higher up. The dumpster.
When a vampire hasn't eaten in four days their skin pigment levels out.
Eva backs me up by this time, "No, we both smelled blood…" she starts going through the trash to.
My leg is already halfway into the dumpster. I go over into it hoping I don't get stuck with anything sharp or end up cutting myself and losing more blood. I send my arms deep into the trash and I can sense it now, taste it. Rain runs down my milky arm. But at this distance he funk of stale everything has perforated what little bit of my sense the rain hasn't already gotten. But the blood still rings true. Suddenly I grasp something soggy, but halfway dry, this is not water wet.
Then I pull it free and glance down, I can't believe what I'm seeing, I can't believe this is what I hunted so hard for. Somehow I thought I would be more excited.
Minutes later we are gathered around a makeshift stove, a pot from Eva's pack hanging over in open fire in the basement of a packing supply warehouse. The smell of warm blood is filling the air for the first time in…I don't know how long.
"This shit is insane," Eva cries, "You all can't expect us to drink from this."
"You don't have to, more for the rest of us," I say as I put another news paper on the fire.
With a nod Erin shows her silent agreement but then goes on to add, "Claudia's right, we're lucky she's got such a good bloodline…no one else would have ever picked up on something so faint."
The bitch always has to be positive.
An there it was, more about the great-fucking-queen Gwen.
Slowly Eva crawls over to look down in the pot, "We've got to be the worst vampires ever…trying to extract blood from a tampon."
"We could call it a Vampire Tea Bag…" was all I could muster.
Beau leaned a little closer, ignoring my joke, "What do you suppose it tastes like?"
"It tastes like the first thing we've had in weeks," says Erin.
Daunte rubs his hands together, "I would like to think it tastes like eating a bitch out, only with blood—which is fine by me," he paused, "A meal and a snack."
I turn away from the fire for a bit, "Thank you for that…most enlightening commentary."
Erin went in her pack and produced some plastic cups, "I'm guessing that this is going to be hot, so everyone be careful."
We split it up, there's five of us, and just enough for us to drink. I think I'm the first one to take a sip, not half as bad as I thought it would be.. I can barely taste the blood part of it, since most of its water. Boiling it out was the only way we could have harvested the blood from the tampon other than passing it around like a doobie and sucking the blood out. And that was out of the question.
When a vampire hasn't eaten in a week and a half, they become powder white.
That's where the whole pale vampire myth comes from. When the vampire is black that rule goes out the window, with them its harder to tell.
Daunte chugged his down, he started after me but finished before, "Not that bad."
I drink mine wordlessly.
Erin and the others are taking theirs in now, and Beau is the first to make an accurate comment on what it is he's just tasted. He looks up as he speaks, "It taste almost exactly like blood, its just a little bitter."
Suddenly it dawns on me that I don't care what this is anymore, blood from an asshole would have tasted good after almost two weeks of not eating. As I finish the glass a little bit of it dribbles down my chin.
I pushed off the ground to my feet and flung the cup to my side, when you've got an eternity to live littering doesn't really bother you that much anymore. Everyone that's mortal is so worried about 'leaving their mark on the world', whether their mark be some great feat or just keeping the world for those to come after.
At the time, I didn't realize it, but I was one of those to inherit that world. Living means fear of dying, but the walking dead, those like us; will not fear natural death ever again.
That was one of the first things that Erin said to me, she really never tried to explain it any further. But somehow I could tell she wasn't just some dumb-ass regurgitating pretentious bullshit she heard elsewhere. When I look back on coming with them, I realize that Erin was the only reason that I ever came with them was probably because of Erin. Her being the oldest and most experienced of their group, I just needed a reason to learn some things, the kind of things I didn't give Gwen the time to answer.
She certainly was more fun than Gwen.
I met them in one of those filthy fucking vampire dives in Chicago. There was nothing miraculous about how we all met, we just walked out of that place together. And after that, every where they went, I went. And I just kept leaving with them.
There's no clean up for people squatting in a warehouse, just leave what you don't need or can't carry, taste the rest. Being in places like this sickened me. Already I want to be out in the cold driving rain again. This place we're in, its dank and disgusting. Rain is leaking in almost everywhere, except for where we've set up. On the floor the burnt up news paper blows around some.
"We need to keep moving, don't we?" asked Eva.
Daunte lays back on the ground with his arms folded, "Did anyone bother to check the shipping schedule?"
"Just so long as we get to where we can make it to Britain," Beau said.
Eva averted her eyes, "Funny, someone should have suggested that before we crossed the fucking country."
"Eva's right," Erin suddenly said, "Now we're even further away from a port that could take us directly there."
Beau cut in, "I thought we were going to China"
"China! What the fuck is wrong with you?" Daunte said, "The plan was the Middle East."
I spoke, slowly at first, "I have a travel account…from my old work as a reporter, there should be enough to get anywhere we want by plane."
Everyone stared at me as if I had done something wrong. I think it was because for the first time I had offered something of myself to help the group. Not just a bloody tampon or some brute strength in a brawl. But really offered of myself. Thinking about work felt strange, especially when I talk about it with people who are complete strangers, even after knowing them for more than a week. I started to wonder, would I ever work again, would I ever need to.
That is my work.
My mind drifted to more things, other things that I might never do again. Would I ever see my mother again, the horrid half-wit bitch that she was. Would I ever have sex again? Or have a boyfriend that wasn't a completely worthless tool? Would I ever own a house? Would I even ever write again? Could I even have children, no that I ever wanted to. It was strange, these were all things that I never worried about when I was alive.
And more so now, finding love did nothing for a vampires, there were so many of us, spread so far across the globe that I couldn't see anyone promising forever like the Humans do. They know they don't have forever, most times forty, or fifty years at most. So when they promise that they know there's an escape clause.
To us there too many out there other vampires out there. There are too many possibilities and too much time to try all of them out.
When you are Human there is all of this pressure to settle down, when you settle down you make more of a mark than you ever could moving from person to person. You might even have a kid and pass on a little bit of DNA while you're at it.
Fucking and fucking, this world is drowning in sex. People are over preoccupied with it. And when it comes down to it, sex really has only one true purpose, to make children. All that other stuff, the pleasure, the STDs. Those are just the byproducts. But everyone wants something for nothing, everyone wants to have sex but have none of the consequences.
Even as vampires men seemed to not have changed.
They want to spelunk the caves and climb the highest peaks of as many women as possible. If I told you half of the cheese-dick pick-up lines I'd heard since I had became a vampire…
One guy told me, "I'm Dracula's cousin," another said "They based Lestat off of me". In the case of Dracula, I never was interested much in him. As for Lestat, the Christian or the pre-Christian one?
Sad part was, I just wasn't interested in relationships.
Daunte sat back up with his large suede boots propped up on their heels, wrapped his arms around his knees. A smile spread across his dark features, "Ya know, this ain't what I thought it would be like," he paused, "Like it is in all of those Anne Rice novels—running around Europe making out with other vampires."
Erin laughed, "If that's eternity, give me death."
"If we're going to do this," I started, "We better get a move on, there's not much time."
Erin nodded and we all stood.
"So you never pictured dumpster diving for tampons?" Eva said.