C h I l l s

Graves Aren't meant to be Dug Up

It all happened when my doof of a brother took me to the cemetery, as a late birthday present. He didn't get me anything, so mom said that he owed me. This is how Darren pays me back.

I mean, I don't want anything that this guy has to offer! Darren's secretly a bad boy. Like, his grades are off the top, straight As! But, in 7th grade (not when a teacher is looking) all of the small and meek are picked on.

"Darren, my feet hurt!" I complained. Oh, by the way, I'm only 7.

"Oh, stop being such a baby Artie; this is my present to you. Tonight, all of our fears go down the drain. Tonight, we get rich," his face had a Chucky look to it; creepy, yet excited.

"Whaddya mean?" suddenly, I got the message, "are we going to dig up a grave? Just like grave robbers?" Darren laughed at my outburst, and shook his head.

"Almost. Do you know Mrs. Alburky?" I nodded, "Several days ago, she died. Or, to phrase it correctly, her husband murdered her."

I suddenly took an interest to the graves. Now that I really looked at it, they seemed to be shaking…

"Yup. Ol' Mr. Alburky took a liking to her throat. It's rumored that the butcher knife went through it within seconds. But do you know what the best part about where this story is heading?" no words needed to be said, "She's a vampire. Tonight we're gonna prove this fact." He took out two stakes, and a bottle of what must be holy water. I was shocked into silence. Darren turned and began to walk.

Several silent minutes later, I looked up from Darren's feet. There was a mist in the air, thick enough so you can't see where you're going, even with a flashlight. The trees looked menacing, with crooked, bent faces where broken branches should've been. The mist swirled around my feet, curling, trying to grab my ankle and drag me into the unknown…

"We're here," Darren's voice shook me out of my thoughts. I looked closer at the grave.

Loretta Alburky

Birth: 1969

Died: 2010

"She was a good neighbor, friend, and wife. We'll miss her dearly."

"OK, before we do this Artie, you need to be relaxed. Just think about your happy place." I guess my face wasn't relaxed enough to his majesty's liking, so he sighed, and took my hands. "Here, do this for me. Put your hands in front of you like this," he took both of my hands, and put my right arm parallel over my left, as far as they would go. "OK. This is your space. Your personal bubble. So long as you believe it'll work, then nobody'll mess with you. You get me?"

I thought for a moment, and finally said "right, right. And I suppose if I believe that Tinker Bell is real, that'll happen too." He punched me in the shoulder, and smiled.

"Ready?"

"Ready." We went up to the grave and dug up Mrs. Alburky. It took a lot of hard work, and I nearly broke my back lifting her coffin, but we did it after about a half hour. Thank God the dirt was still fresh. "Good Lord, she reeks!" I said.

The foul stench that affiliated my nostrils was the smell of rotten eggs, steamed broccoli, cow patty, anything that you can imagine that just… smelled like death.

"That's good. It means that she hasn't fed in a while. She's weak," he opened her coffin.

Her flesh was a rotting green color, with maggots crawling everywhere. Along her face was skin, peeling back with eyes that was the blackest of the black. I felt like I could fall into them. What used to be shining silver hair was now falling off, revealing a rotting skull. Her dress was a bright pink, with several worms crawling on top. But her jewelry…

First, her necklace was encrusted with diamonds, and in the center was a gigantic ruby, about the size of my thumb. Her wedding ring was gold, and a small diamond was on top. A bronze bracelet was on her left hand, and another on her right.

Mrs. Alburky's hands were crossed, just like a vampire's, and her feet strait out at the end of the coffin. Her right knee looked swollen and bent at a funny angle.

Darren's eyes lit up as soon as mine and I knew we were both thinking the same thing.

Take the jewels.

"Forget you, lady. Artie, you take her necklace, and I'll take her ring. We each get a bracelet."

"Oh man, done. Best birthday present ever dude. Sell these for a good price, and I'll have my college fund."

"I'll have spending money for my girl." We each got our jewels, and got out. "I told you that this trip would be worth it," Darren said. We were turned so that I was facing the grave, and Darren had his back to it.

As he was talking I saw something move. "Hey, dude, turn around," Darren laughed and did so, and he immediately stopped.

A dark figure emerged from the darkness, fog swirling around her ankles. Mrs. Alburky had emerged from her grave.

Her fangs glistened in the moonlight, and her eyes had turned a dark red. Her hair was messed up, it had apparently grown back. She was snarling, revealing that her fangs were bloody. Some unfortunate soul was her last dinner. The worms and maggots fell off with each step, and with each step her skin rehealed itself. Mrs. Alburky let out a banshee scream, loud enough to make me realize: we haven't moved.

I grabbed Darren, and ran as fast as my legs could carry me. He snapped out of whatever he was in, and began to run faster, leaving me. I could hear his voice from a few feet away, saying:

"I'm sorry Artie. I really am. But it's either me or you, and you're just so slow… I don't have to outrun her, I just have to outrun you." And he took off with a bounding jump, leaving me to be her victim.

Mrs. Alburky made a leap, and grabbed onto my ankles. I screamed, and fell down. She got up and held me down while her fangs entered my neck. It was a pain like no other. I let out a heart wrenching shriek, and realized that I was done for. So thanks a lot Darren. I'll haunt you forever.

Darren was running as fast as he could go, and jumped onto the fence that surrounded the graveyard. He began to climb, and was pulled down by a cold, dead hand. He shrieked, and turned to face his attacker. It was Artie.

"You left me back there, Darren. You left me to die to save yourself. But it isn't that bad. She just bites your neck, and that's rather painful, but it's a small price to pay for immortality." He took a good look at Darren, "I don't know, Ma'am. I think he'd be a great snack. After all, Darren isn't a big loss. He would turn on us in a heartbeat."

A shadow emerged from the mist, with a raspy voice, almost a whisper, "I am rather hungry, and you're a newbie… let me show you how it's done," they both lunged for Darren. His screaming was cut off immediately.<