Just another exciting Friday night in Atlanta, Georgia as my roomie Lila, and I were watching the ten o’clock evening news. There was nothing out of the ordinary until some pretty crazy remote started broadcasting. There were some weirdly dressed people, of all ages and sexes, dressed in Goth gear, brandishing whips and chains, mugging it up for the camera in their white makeup and heavily made up black eyes and lips. With them were pale people dressed in black outfits complete with black capes flashing grotesque smiles to showcase their large fake fangs, also camping it up for the news camera.
As these people paraded across the screen, a group of angry protesters with signs came into view. The station had to bleep most of their shouts, but their signs were loud enough to get the picture - ‘Bloodsuckers need a good stake!’ and ‘Goths belong in therapy’.
Lila and I sat transfixed as the camera finally panned back to the reporter. “John, we are witnessing the opening of Thirst, the first nightclub in Georgia that boasts of an actual Blood Bar. Of course, they say all beverages are served including, er, blood. Whether or not there are any takers, well, that remains to be seen. This new venue, complete with state of the art pyrotechnics and automated moving light effects, called intelligent lighting, has already started booking high profile leading acts for their expansive concert venue in the complex. There are multi-leveled dance floors and even areas featuring massive TV’s so folks can watch all types of world-wide sports. There is something for everyone it seems. Thirst promises to add new blood, pardon the intended pun, to this normally quiet suburb of Atlanta, By the way, John, the club closes at 4:00 a.m., providing time for everyone to return to their coffins before dawn. Back to the studio. “
Lila turned to me with excitement written all over her. “Oh Nassie,” she said, ‘we absolutely have to go! Did you see how cool those people were? Please come with me! If you don’t like it, we’ll leave. How about tomorrow night?”
Lila is far more adventurous than I. She lives in the real world and is the successful author of three horror novels, and is working on her breakthrough novel that will be a best-seller. She is a tall, drop dead gorgeous Native American, with long black hair that looks bluish in certain light. Me? I am a budding freelance writer who lives and dies by the computer. I look quite professional when I remember to change from my grey sweats that double as pajamas. I’m short and happy with my Mediterranean looks.
“OK Lila! Maybe I can get a story out of it.” In my best Bela Lugosi imitation, I say, “Who are these folks who vant to drink your blooooood?! But seriously, what are we going to wear? It’s been a long time since my clubbing days, especially my Vampire bar clubbing days!”
The next weekend, on Saturday, we entered the crowded club. It had been an enormous warehouse, now subdivided into levels. Looking up, there were additional dance floors and rooms visible from the huge dance floor on the main floor. I could see dancers overhead, a myriad of colors dancing to their respective beats. There were darkened rooms, too. It seemed they were lit only by the flickering of thousands of candles, creating a most mysterious and strangely inviting atmosphere.
The beat of the drums and bass of the band was infectious and the music reverberated loudly, almost hurting the fillings in my teeth. The crowd at the main dance floor was enormous and featured the gamut of patrons from costumed to ‘trendy chic’ only Atlantans can pull off.
Lila had already disappeared into the crowd of dancers. I was standing around awkwardly. Looking around, I was self-conscious as I was greatly underdressed in a simple pretty purple tunic and my best jeans. My favorite platform heels made me all of 5’ 4”. What makeup I had on paled in comparison to the painted ladies hunting for vampire hunks. My dark hair hung straight down my back, instead of the current in vogue Victoria Beckham short chic ‘do. I thought I’d better sit somewhere and regroup. I needed to think about what to do next.
I made my way through the crowd to the nearest bar and took an empty seat. The bartender was a Goth. I caught him eyeing me as I walked toward the bar. He was really very striking. His long, wavy jet black hair was highlighted by a thick metallic crimson streak running along one side. A single gold earring, in the shape of an Egyptian Ankh, dangled from his right ear, and he had a nose stud. His tight black leather pants were adorned with a silver chain as a belt. His leather fingerless gloves were disturbingly sexy. He smiled and asked what I would like. Trying to sound cosmopolitan, I ordered a glass of Tenuta Red, with a twist of lemon. I don’t really drink, but I read about it in a Cosmo article recently and it sounded sophisticated.
He brought my wine. I got the nerve to compliment him on his gloves. He smiled and we started talking. Turns out he was just a really nice guy. OK he was in full Goth regalia, but I really liked him. Underneath the white makeup and black eyeliner, and black lips, this was one sexy guy. I got the nerve to ask, “Is the hype true , do they really offer blood to drink?”
A silken voice in back of me said, “We offer many kinds of blood - human, animal, and an invention of mine, a synthetic blend that gives the force of life for those who don’t want to partake of blood, but need it to exist. It can even be flavored. I’m surprised Val didn’t tell you already.”
I turned around and looked up to see the most gorgeous man I’d ever laid eyes on. He was tall, about 6’6”, slender build, very pale flawless complexion, dark blue eyes, and his white blonde hair flowed past his shoulders. I thought cross Moorcock’s Lord Elric of Melnibone with Lucius Malfoy from the Harry Potter books, and this is he. His tailored outfit was pure designer. My guess was Armani I think, but his cape – yes - his cape, was the color of midnight and seemed fluid as it draped to the floor. I kept reminding myself to breathe.
“My name is Phillip Constantine. Welcome to my club, Thirst. And you are…?’
I stood up and he took my hand, “Hi, my name is Anastasia Blahospiros. I’m pleased to meet you. This is a marvelous complex.”
Looking straight into my eyes, he lifted my hand and kissed it. Then, he turned my hand over, and slowly, deliberately, kissed the inside of my wrist. I almost had an orgasm right there.
“Val, whatever Anastasia (he pronounced my name correctly! an’ na sta see’ ah) wants during her stay, it is on the house!” Then he smiled at me again, “Welcome, beautiful one.”
After another soulful look, Phillip disappeared into the crowd.
I took a cooling sip of the Tenuta, and noticed Val giving me a funny look.
“What’s the matter?” I asked. “You look like you’ve seen a ghost.”
He took a breath, “That was Phillip Constantine. Thirst’s owner.”
“Yeah, that’s what he told me – so what’s the matter?’
“He’s a vampire.”
“Rigggghhht.....okay – he seemed really nice.”
“Aren’t you frightened?”
“Well, if he is a vampire, he’s not a bat at the moment, and doesn’t fizzle under all these lights, smells divine, so he hasn’t slept in a coffin filled with soil, nor slept anywhere in that designer outfit. Besides, I looked into his eyes, Val. I saw no evil in him.”
“Lady, you are something else. Yeah, he’s cool, but he really is a vampire.” He stared at me wide-eyed. “He’s a real blood sucking vampire.”
I shrugged. “Well Val, everybody’s got to be something.”
“Huh…Sometimes Goths and Vamps are like oil and water – this gig pays great and Phillip personally hired me, probably only because I add to the atmosphere of the place…”
“I think he must have hired you because you are excellent at what you do.”
Lila ran talking to me breathlessly as she came between me and the bar. “There you are Nassie! I think I’ve had enough research for the night. You have a guy kissing your hand, and one wanting to drink my blood! Whoo-hoo! Looks like they were all having fun! May use this place in my next book!” Lila smiled looking back and forth from Val to me curiously - “Ready to go home?” she asked. I stood and gathered my purse and pulled out a twenty dollar bill and gave it to Val. “This is a thank you for everything. I enjoyed meeting you and tell Mr. Constantine, it was a pleasure to meet him.”
At home I took a long hot shower, put on my favorite T-shirt, and slipped into bed. Before long, I threw off my T-shirt, wanting to feel the coolness of the sheets on my hot body. What a dream I had! Phillip had crept into bed with me and covered my naked body with his sumptuous cape, pulling me towards him. The feeling in his arms across my breasts was that of protection, sweetness, totally innocent, and yet, it was extremely sexual.
Over morning coffee, I scanned the Sunday Journal. If it was up to me, there’d only be the Entertainment, Sports, and Comic Sections offered instead of including stories on war, evil, hate and politics. I grabbed the Entertainment Section and there it was: An article on Thirst, and there was a huge picture of Phillip kissing me on the wrist, with an expression on my face saying ‘take me I’m yours!’ Val was at the side of the photo with a look of disgust. What gives with that? Oh, that kiss on the wrist!!!
I yelled to Lila that coffee was on and I’d be back in a few minutes, and went to the corner deli and bought 10 copies of the paper.
Needless to say, every literate friend I had within a 100 mile radius called me – usually starting the conversation with “Good ev-en-ing – I’m Count Drrrrracula, hehehe…”
My crazy group of friends insisted I take them to Thirst. Now, they were curious and wanted to see the Atlanta’s latest hot spot. The next weekend, as we entered, I saw Val at the bar. We smiled and waved to each other. My friends laughed at his bizarre Goth gear, and about fell over as they saw others in more outrageous garb – mostly wannabe vamps in full regalia.
They left for the dance floor where everyone is on an even playing field. Lila was leading the way, anxious to show the gang everything.
I can’t dance. Heck, they even called me Klutz in college. So I walked around looking at the different rooms and trying to explore what each offered. Something made me enter a darkened room I had seen before. There were thousands of candles creating an eerily sensual atmosphere. There stood or sat men and women allowing people to cut them and drink from each other’s wounds. There was utter silence, like in a dream. Enticing you to enter. They were too engrossed in themselves to notice me. Then a cloaked figure came out of the darkness and curiously beckoned to me to follow. I couldn’t tell if it was male or female, but I smiled and shook my head no and walked back into the light. Oddly enough, I wasn’t shocked. I knew there were vampire ‘groupies’, but had never seen anything like it. I wondered if the people drinking the blood really think they were real vampires. Nah, just an acquired taste.
I went to the bar where Val was on duty and he had my Tenuta Red waiting for me. I was rather surprised - flattered even that he’d remembered me.
Val, smiling widely, slid a Thirst bag toward me. The black bag had ‘Thirst’ printed on it with big dripping blood-red letters. “Open it. It’s for you.”
I opened the bag and I squealed with delight! It was a pair of fingerless gloves like Val’s! The ones I said I’d love to get! Immediately, I put them on and modeled them for Val. I reached over the bar and hugged my favorite Goth. He held me tightly. Maybe too tightly.
He then slid a small package towards me. It was a small white box tied with a blood red ribbon. A note was attached to the box. I opened the envelope and there was the most elegant script I’d ever seen. The note read:
You are always a welcomed guest. Here, enter freely,
And of your own free will. You are protected. With this card,
You are a permanent guest of mine and a member of Thirst.
You haunt my dreams,
I opened the box and in the tissue was an embossed blood-red metal card, like a driver’s license. The word ‘Thirst’ was printed at the top of the card. Below that was my name printed, Anastasia Blahospiros. On the reverse side was a 24 hour emergency number,
I LOVED IT! My own Thirst card! Way cool!
“Val, did Phillip really give this to me?”
“Yup. Doesn’t do that for anyone. You understand what that card means? You have carte blanche here. Come anytime, drink, eat, whatever you want. It’s all on the house.”
“That’s wonderful, but it’s too much. Is it too much? Should I write a note that I can’t accept this generosity?”
“That would hurt him deeply. He meant no disrespect to the beautiful lady”, the silken voice behind me said.
Surprised by the unexpected words, I spun around. “None taken Phillip. Your gift is too generous, but I’ll treasure it.”
From the edge of the Goth bar, I could hear the music in the background. It was one of my favorite songs, “The First Time Ever I Saw Your Face”. Phillip smiled a crooked smile I could get lost in. He looked at my gloves and raised his eyebrows in surprise, then quickly looked at Val, but said nothing. Then, returning his gaze toward me, he said, “Dance with me?”
“I’m not being rude,” I stammered, “but I don’t know how.”
Phillip smiled. “I’m a very good teacher. Come.”
I looked up at his chiseled face, nodded, and walked with him to the dance floor. He held me, and we moved flawlessly as one. Not bad for a non-dancer. Kind of like floating on air. A Vampire trick? If it was, it was wonderful.
After the dance, he walked me back to Val’s bar. Val silently poured me a glass of Tenuta Red, and Phillip a rich burgundy wine. We clinked glasses and drank.
“Phillip, what’s a blood bar?” I asked.
“Well, one may say it is a place where your preference for blood may be given without judgment. Whether it is for existence or because one may believe by drinking blood they are vampires, it doesn’t matter.”
“The other is a different scenario. You’ve noticed the darkened rooms all around the perimeter of the club. People know they can enter and either cut a willing participant and drink the blood from their wound, or a vampire may receive permission by the curious to feed from them. No judgment. No questions. It’s not painful, you know. Much like being pleasured.”
“Either way, they do what they must and what they need. Of course, there are the adventurous idiots who want to ‘taste blood’ or are dared by others to go to the Blood Bar. We are more likely than not serving them spiced tomato juice…They get grossed out and they rush to buy Thirst T-shirts and leave contentedly.”
By then, I heard my friends in varied happy states of intoxication – having danced and drunk their fill.
Phillip looked at them and in a concerned voice said, “Are they going to be all right going home? Should I furnish transportation?” My friends had already started singing – different songs all at once! It’s going to be an interesting ride home!
I laughed. “That’s really nice, but no. I make sure there are three of us designated drivers, Tracy E., Rebecca, and I, when we go out together. - Hey Lila! Get Gary and Jacamo, please, and lead them toward ‘Cuda’, Vicko, and Chris. Evangeline, Pete, Athena and Dale are already in the cars. - You see, Phillip, they entertain us sober ones with serenades, as you can hear now, or hilarious stories. In the morning, they won’t ever remember what they did. They can all stay at our apartment tonight so I know they’ll be safe tonight. Goodnight, Phillip, and again, I love my gift. Thanks again for the kindness.”
“Aren’t you going to ask?”
“Ask what, Phillip?”
“If I’m a vampire.” He leaned into me and whispered conspiratorially, “They say I’m a monster.”
“Phillip, would it matter? I have friends who are vegetarians. Vegans, lactose intolerant, write with their right hands, have green eyes…do I exclude them as friends? If you are a vampire, you weren’t born that way. Did you ask for it? And if my memory serves me correctly, you created a synthetic blood blend that tells me you mean no harm to humans…well, most humans. My heart tells me you are a good man, and I feel you are my friend, regardless of being a vamp or not. ‘Night.”
He seemed to sigh and relax “And to you, Anastasia.”
A few weeks later, after my visit to Thirst, I started coming more often. I was so fascinated with the whole scene, I’d convinced myself I was writing an article about Thirst for Atlanta Magazine, but mostly I came to see Phillip. He was gentle, funny, and it was an instant connection between us. Electric, sexual, sweetness beyond measure.
For some reason, I didn’t valet one night. It was one of the rare times I came to the club alone. Crap. As I was walking toward my car, from out of nowhere came a handful of masked people grabbing and pushing me from one to the other screaming for me to stay away from the evil vampire bastard or I’ll regret it. As I was being jostled, I grabbed my ‘Screamer’ device from my purse. It emits an ear shattering noise that does a lot of damage, and is much easier for me to use than tear gas. I never leave home without it.
As I pulled the lever, I heard a low growling. Between the ear drum breaking noise and the growling, my attackers ran in fright. I saw Phillip run in lightning speed, fangs elongated. It was both a frightening and joyous sight to behold, since he saved me from whatever fate I might have suffered. Phillip approached me.
“Most impressive, Anastasia,” he said casually, his voice and smile returning to normal now. He kneeled next to me.
“How did you know I needed help? Was it the camera security?”
“Truthfully, I sensed there was danger around you, and by the time I found you, there you were, using that horrid horn and with my approach and growl, they scattered like the cowards they are. But, your leg is bleeding! Let me help you.”
He slowly caressed, then kissed my leg and licked the blood away. I felt a most sexual jolt. When he stopped, I saw no wound where a nasty cut had been minutes before!
“Wow! Thanks for the vampire cure! Now how can I repay that?” I placed my hand on his cool cheek, holding him, not even aware of what I was doing.
Then, he kissed me. There was no blood taste, just sweet coolness that left me breathless.
Oh God. I think I’m falling in love with a vampire. What’ll my family say? The up side, he’s Greek like me – maybe that’ll help when I bring him home to meet the folks….or maybe not…Maybe having the guy be alive is one of their requirements…Yikes!
Phillip still held me in his arms and asked “May I call on you? I feel this connection between us. Would you be willing to date a vampire?”
I told him “Yes, as long as you understand I don’t go to bed with just any old vampire!” He laughed. “Seriously Phillip, I also feel the connection, but if it’s just sex you want, go elsewhere. I am a product of an old-fashioned Greek family. I don’t jump from relationship to relationship, bed to bed.” Touching his face, “Even if I am attracted to that man.”
Smiling, Phillip said, “There are many who feel otherwise, but I want to woo you. Old fashioned like me. We’ll let the relationship grow and see where it leads. But always know you’ll be safe with me.”
I now became a regular at Thirst. Sometimes my friends would come with me; most times I’d be alone. Alone wasn’t quite the term. After the incident in the parking lot, I never felt alone again. I had a vampire guardian angel looking after me.
Sometimes I would sit at Val’s bar while Phillip was busy being the mysterious and gracious host of Thirst. “Hey Val! I’ve been reading up on the Goth culture.”
Val smiled at me and said, “OK, tell me about what you’ve learned.”
“Well, I won’t go into the Visogoth stuff, but since the 1800’s the culture has been evolving and expanding. The influence of the occult and obsession with death was so prevalent, that the authors of the time created stories to scare the reader – and the gothic novel was created. Dracula! Frankenstein! Then talk about the king of writers, Edgar Allan Poe! He’d be quite at home in this Goth bar, I think. How am I doing so far?”
Val’s elbow was braced on the bar’s edge, hand under his chin, “You’ve done your research. Go on.”
“Well, as time marched, the interest in the whole subculture that embraces the darker side of life continued and those individuals continued to dress in black and deathlike make-up to emulate their ideals. Music greatly influenced by the Goth culture. There is even presented a young Goth lady who’s on a hit TV show! So although the Goths may wish to shock, to be far from the norm, they are folks like the rest of us, with feelings, wishes and dreams.”
“You get a gold star, my dear. You’re not ready to lecture at a Goth event, but it’s a great start! You know, there is a big Goth gathering in a few weeks. What do you say we go together? I can give you pointers on makeup and dress. It’d be fun, and we can get to know each other better socially.”
When I realized that sounded like a date, I had to say, “Val, you are a wonderful man. Any girl would jump to be with you, but I think Phillip has taken my heart, and don’t think it would be a good idea right now.”
He stared at me a few seconds and then asked, “Humor me here. If you hadn’t met Phillip, and met me, would you ever have considered dating me?”
I took his hand and said “Of course! You’re wonderful! I guess it’s a matter of timing, like everything else in life. It would have been fun to see who would have influenced who the most!” Val’s face contorted in hate.
“Don’t you see that Phillip was no more than an animal - a feral monster? That bastard doesn’t know how to handle a lady - he just wants to devour you! Are you that stupid you can’t see that?”
“DON’T YOU EVER to talk to me about Phillip or myself that way! We could be friends, or not. I could wave to you on my way to another bar or stay in Phillip’s private offices, or you could cease to exist for me. Your choice. Not the conversation I wanted to have with you, but it’s Phillip I want to know better.”
He sullenly poured me a glass of cola and mumbled something about he’ll win the next round.
Phillip and I continued our courtship – we would play chess in his sumptuous office suite on an antique chess set, circa Renaissance Italy. I became quite a good player. Surprisingly he liked Jeopardy!
We’d have our favorite categories and ‘bet’ kisses on Final Jeopardy questions.
Surprisingly, we never spoke how he became a vampire, or the details of sustenance he needed to function. He was my knight and I accepted him as he was, just as he accepted me.
Lila and I suggested to Phillip that he establish a free clinic with emergency care with the extra space of the Thirst complex. Those who could not pay, didn’t have to. Children particularly benefitted from this gesture. Phillip was delighted in ‘giving back to the community’ by donating these services. After so much red tape, The People’s Free Clinic/Emergency Care Facility opened. Some of the doctors on duty were vamps but no one noticed. They knew their commitment to healing and meant to do no harm. The community was impressed into silence. Sometimes Lila and I would volunteer at the clinic working on the paperwork and records. It was a happy time for us.
We’d dine at the finest restaurants and at local treasures around Atlanta, like the Varsity near Georgia Tech. It’s a fun spot that’s billed as the longest drive-in restaurant in the world. Their specialties? Chili dogs, pimento cheese cheeseburgers, onion rings, fried peach pies, and the best orange drinks ever.
Yes. Phillip could eat and drink. He said it meant nothing to him as long as he had proper blood sustenance.
Museums were our passions. We especially loved going to my favorite, The Carlos Museum at Emory University. Looking at the ancient exhibits, we’d talk for hours about ancient history. We found we both loved the opera and theatre. Our hearts were starting to merge. OK, one wasn’t beating, but my heart beat well enough for both of us. Each of us was starting to know the other, the good details as well as the bad. If you can accept the person with all of the bad with the good, and still get a fuzzy feeling, well, love comes easily and sweetly.
Thirst became not only famous for the outrageous claims of blood availability, but the venue for major rock groups and stars. You’d be surprised to know there are some major rockers who are of the vampire persuasion! Thirst also gained a reputation as benefactor for sponsoring concerts for various charities and causes.
During this lovely time of kindness, I started getting notes on my windshield and in my mailbox. At first they were cautiously urging me to stay away from the monster vampire. As our courtship continued, the ‘hints’ became more public. My tires were slashed. Dead birds were placed on my car. Windows at the apartment were broken while Lila and I were at work. Even though we had security cameras, nothing more than a blur could be seen in the reviewed films. Each note more explicit and violent; to stay away from that godless vampire or I would pay a great price by ignoring these warnings. I wasn’t going to be intimidated by this stuff. I paid for extra security for Lila and me to and from work, and overnight while we slept.
It was quiet for a while and I started relaxing a little. Thought maybe my security efforts had paid off.
Weeks later, after a delightful evening of dinner and a movie, Phillip walked me to my door. It was ajar and splashed with blood. So much blood it looked like a slaughterhouse! I thought Lila! Oh dear God - Lila! I ran in and she wasn’t there! Then I remembered she was in Washington State doing research and was due in the next day.
Inside, I started to tell Phillip about the threats, He started pacing – “I didn’t mean for this to happen! When I saw you that night at Thirst, I knew. I had dreams that I would die by the hands of a woman with the face of an angel, whose name dealt with the resurrection. Anastasi - the Greek word for resurrection – I, who fear nothing, looked into your eyes, but saw no evil. No harm. No, you aren’t my executioner. But these threats to you – I fear for you. Perhaps it’s time to stop now before we fall too much deeper into each other. I cannot lose you! If they touch you I will lose my will to be what you see me to be, not the monster they see who feeds on blood like a fly on a dead animal. I love you too much.”
“Phillip, you’re saying it’s over before anything has really started? You do what your nature dictates you to be? Who said you have to be different from that? Damn it! You’re a vampire, not a saint! You have not only goodness in your heart, but my heart is beating in there for you.” I took my hand from my heart and placed it on his chest.
He stood as still as a statue. Didn’t seem to breathe for a long time, and had a far away look in his eyes. His mind was made up.
“Phillip,” my voice sounded lonely already, “take me to bed. Here. Now, with me, the first and the last time, if that is your decision. I won’t let you leave otherwise. I want to remember our making love, if only just once.”
He closed his eyes and nodded. We went to my bedroom, and gently kissed as we lay on the bed, our bodies softly caressing and moving to each other’s touch, slowly shedding our clothes. An aroused vampire is quite a sight to behold indeed. Such a sweet perfect body.
As we got more vigorous in our caresses, white hot passion flared. How our bodies meld to each other. So perfect. Suddenly, I saw Phillip’s back arch, a knife was being thrust into him with insane strength and anger! Blood was spurting everywhere, long violent streams. I screamed in horror as I saw Val, his assaulter, continued to slash at Phillip with deep thrusts as they both slipped on the blood and landed on the floor. So much blood!
Phillip grabbed Val’s neck as I tried to get the knife away. “Why, Val, Why?” Phillip’s voice was barely a whisper.
Val was crying and as angry as any man I’d ever seen, “The woman could have been mine! The undead are abominations and she still loves you! Vampire! You’ll lose too much blood to heal your wounds!”
As I his heard bones cracking, I grabbed Val’s knife. Phillip bit him in the throat as I drove the knife into Val’s heart.
Dear God…I liked it.
I ran to the phone and dialed the number on the back of the Thirst card, told them where we were and that Phillip was badly wounded.
I ran back to Phillip and held him, trying to hold back the tears that were flowing. ‘What can I do for you?”
“Anastasia, there is one thing. I need you to do exactly as I say. No questions.”
“I’d do anything for you.”
“Put your mouth on one of the wounds – drink my blood. Now.”
Without a thought, I knelt down and did as he asked. My love’s blood becoming part of my own. After a minute I stopped drinking. “Phillip, why don’t you heal yourself?”
“Too much blood has been lost. It’s too late.”
“Not if you replenish your blood.”
Rather than polluting our blood with Val’s I took my nail scissors from a drawer and cut my bare breast. “Drink! Help Yourself! Drink! I did as you asked of me, now you do this for me! Let me know at least I tried to help you!”
Slowly, Phillip latched onto my breast, and ah, I felt a pulling sensation that was amazingly sexual. As he drank deeply, each of my breaths was becoming shallower. I felt lighter and lighter as the blood left me. I wondered if I would be turned that night, or just die then and there; at least it would be saving my angel. Perhaps we’d meet one day on the Other Side.
Then I saw a light – at first just a speck, then the light expanded – so bright – so beautiful…I love you...
I opened my eyes expecting to be in Heaven. But I was in hospital-like room. Thirst’s Clinic? I was receiving a blood transfusion, chest bandaged. So much pain. Where is Phillip? Where is he? I couldn’t get the words out…Then darkness….
The soft velvet voice woke me. “Anastasi. - Resurrection. Yes that is true .”
I opened my eyes and saw Phillip, pale, gaunt, but very much alive…or undead yet alive…smiling at me as he held my hand.
He continued, “You saved me last night with your blood, and the call to Thirst’s hotline to send the medical team. Your blood let my wounds heal. My friends worked to heal you.” He held my hand to his cheek.
“Am I turned, Phillip?”
“I thought about it, but no. I could never be the one to kill you. I love you. Our blood, yours and mine, are now mixed. In a few hundred years you may see a gray hair, but not much different as you look now.” he smiled.
“It’s not quite immortality, but long enough for us to spend a few lifetimes together. Then after that, we’ll talk if you want…”
After a moment I asked, “Why Val?”
Another face came into view. He was one of the doctors from the Thirst Clinic. That’s where we are! He said, “Looks like Val was obsessed by you – the lady who gave him friendship and he probably thought he could turn it to love if he got rid of Phillip. Val must have been trying to scare you away, and then followed Phillip to your apartment. When Phillip didn’t leave, Val must have snapped.”
“Poor soul”, Phillip shook his head.
“You’re lucky Anastasia knew the direct line in,” he told Phillip. She saved your life with her blood and her quick thinking. Rest. Both of you.”
The doctor turned to me. “Everything is being cleared at your apartment – not a drop of blood, nothing out of place. Oh - and we’ve modified your roommate’s memory. Lila walked in as the cleanup team was arriving. When she wakes up, she will have a great story in her to write a most excellent vampire thriller – should be a best seller!”
“Phillip, you should be dead. The blood loss was tremendous. Without her blood, it would have been finished.” The doctor shook his head in wonder. “You were brought back to life. You’re very lucky. You really should be truly dead. I need both of you to rest now.”
Phillip turned his eyes toward me. “Yes,” there was that crooked smile, “but I was resurrected. Yes, Anastasia – anastasi…” He gingerly pulled back the sheets of my bed and slid in next to me. We held each other tightly.
Then we slept.
With special thanks to authors Lila Pinord and Gary Val Tenuta - both authors extraordinaire, and are featured here on AuthorsDen.
Thirst is in process of becoming a full length novel with lots of adventure, horror and romance to come.