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    Short Story~Fan Fiction *Untitled*

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    Phedre nicEssus
    Group Physician

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    Join date : 2012-06-11
    Age : 36

    Short Story~Fan Fiction *Untitled*

    Post  Phedre nicEssus on Thu Feb 05, 2015 12:04 pm

    So I've been writing some fan fiction. Before I post it on a public forum, I was wondering if you guys would let me know if it sucks. I've never really written anything before other than the posts I've made here in character, so this is kinda a new thing for me.

    This is my first story. It's still very much a rough draft and I'm in the process of rewriting it. If you have any ideas on what needs to be added or removed, let me know. I know what I want to fix, but I don't want to say right now and bias your opinions.

    As of yet it's still untitled. I could do with a name for it at the least Smile
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    Phedre nicEssus
    Group Physician

    Posts : 104
    Reputation : 0
    Join date : 2012-06-11
    Age : 36

    Re: Short Story~Fan Fiction *Untitled*

    Post  Phedre nicEssus on Thu Feb 05, 2015 12:17 pm

    I can't seem to find a way to attach a file to a post so I'll just copy and paste it here.

    *Untitled*

    General Fiction, mild action, mild gore, mild language. No trigger warnings. Rated T.


    Blood dripped slowly off her hand into a cooling mess below the bed. Hanging just off the edge her fingers were clawed and wrist cut. No, not cut, torn out. He stood horrified in the hallway. With an anguished cry he ran into the darkened bedroom to her side and a man he never saw struck him from behind. Reaching for her he fell into the blackness.

    James woke up with a start. Sweating and heart pounding he looked frantically around trying to remember where he was. Blankets tangled his legs and the clock on the nightstand read 5:58pm. Taking deep steadying breaths he tried to get his scattered thoughts under control. A nightmare. That's all it was, just a nightmare. Well, not just a nightmare. The same nightmare every night. A memory really, of that night years ago. The night evil crept into his house and killed his fiance. He didn't remember much after being hit from behind. Struggling to get free of the monster and to get to Ava's side. He'd fought it but the evil was so strong. On his back he couldn't get a punch in and was reduced to scratching and biting like a pinned animal. The evil seemed surprised by the bite James took out of its forearm but it didn't stop it from killing James anyway.

    A sharp beeping cut into his thoughts as the clock struck 6:00pm. Irritated at the alarm he couldn't help but be relieved at the interruption of this dark thoughts as he got out of bed. Working night shifts at the local Big-Mart was not what he had anticipated his life would be like. Very little had turned out as planned these last few months. After Ava's death, he left the city. Left everything and everyone he had known and tried to start over. The Big-Mart wasn't too picky at who they hired, James knew there were at least 3 people there in the country illegally, so he knew he could blend in with the crowd. Another nameless, faceless employee in a blue vest.

    James didn't live far from the big box store and the cold no longer bothered him so he walked to work. The fake name may have gotten him the job but he was afraid it wouldn't stand up to the scrutiny of getting a car. Hitching his backpack higher on his shoulders, he struck out in the cold gray slush of January.
    At work he stowed the backpack with the heavy jug labeled “Tomato Juice” in his small locker. He wished he could keep it in the employee fridge, the stuff went rancid quickly on hot days, but he was afraid the mooch stealing employee lunches would grab it and get a nasty surprise. He couldn't risk getting busted.
    Putting on the blue vest with a name tag that read “Jay”, James turned to see Thomas heading toward him. Thomas' face lit up with a big fake smile when he saw James.

    “Hey Big J! I need a huge favor from you!” Thomas said, all grins for his good buddy.

    “What's up Tom? Whatcha need?” James said friendly enough but inward he sighed. He didn't want to have to deal with small talk right now. He was just so tired of it all. The falseness of Thomas' smile, the lie of his name, the minimum wage crap job. This last nightmare really put him in a depressed funk.

    “Alicia's got Saturday off so I wanna take her to a movie. Problem is I have meat hours to ditch. Artie can't cover and they won't let Mike take them anymore after he slit his hand open trying to juggle a knife so I was hoping you were free to cover.” Working with raw meat tended to freak out most people so trying to find someone to cover for you in that department could be tricky.

    “Yeah man, like I said, I don't mind meat department so I can cover whenever.” James hated that he needed hours in the quiet backroom where they butchered and packaged meat for the store. Time he used to drain blood off into empty tomato juice jugs. There was never much blood, most of it was washed off before it ever got to the store, but if you're patient enough you could fill a jug with the weak stuff.
    “Thanks man! Your the best!”

    “Sure, whatever.” James said to Thomas' retreating back. Tom was all 'your the best' when he needed something, but the moment James needed to ditch his daylight shifts Thomas was no where to be found.

    Punching in at the time clock, James double checked what register he was assigned to today. Quick lane. That was fine by him. He could process customers fast and it required next to no thought.

    It only took a few hours into his shift for him to manage to tune out everything except passing the next item over the scanner to the dull beep of the register. His mind wandered and he mulled over where he was and what he was doing. He wanted to know what happened that night, but had no idea where to start. Waking up in all that blood he had stumbled from his house and into the night. Thinking he was going to be a suspect he ran for his life only to find out that he had been declared dead. The police had found so much of his blood at the crime scene that he simply couldn't have lived through it. It wasn't long before he realized he hadn't.

    He had grown up loving the stories of myths and fantasies, but that's all they were to him once, stories. No way any of that could be real. An irritating thought kept at him in the back of his mind. Stories came from somewhere, right? All the symptoms fit. Food never really touched the starving pit in his stomach. Protein drinks came close, but it wasn't till he got a hold of the raw meat one day and his fangs descended from his gums that he started to realize what happened to him. What he had become.

    He was still trying to figure out the rules of his new life. He had no way of knowing which myths were true and which were BS. Honestly he didn't want to experiment on himself to find out. Sunlight hurt, but since he had yet to burst into flame he thought he was okay there. Good thing too, he had been outside before figuring out what had happened to him. When his fangs came down there seemed to be a lot of them. More like a second set of sharp teeth that came down over his normal teeth. He never cared for garlic before but now worried that he'd be allergic. Wood too. However, he didn't feel the need to kidnap virgins or talk in a thick Transylvanian accent. Thank god for that. If he had turned into a walking cliché monster, he'd stake himself.

    “...blood...cattle mutilations...”

    James pulled up out of his thoughts at the mention of blood. It was disgusting how much he yearned for the fluid. He better get his lunch break soon.

    “Dude, can we not have this conversation here?” A blond man in a leather coat looked exasperated at his buddy. “Grab a couple of those, would ya?”

    His tall friend looked up from what he was reading on his phone to where Leather-Coat was nodding. With a roll of his eyes he grabbed two Hostess cherry pies from the rack at the end of the conveyor belt. “Did you want to look around some? Maybe find something with more preservatives and high fructose corn syrup? At least get real pie, not this processed junk.”

    “Hey, it hasn't killed me yet so it must be making me stronger.” Leather-Coat said with a cheeky wink.

    “That's not...that's not actually what that quote means.” Tall Guys seemed baffled at his friends reasoning, but seemed resigned to loosing the argument.

    “Whatever College Boy” Leather-Coat started to dig out a money clip and looked up at James.

    James quickly scanned the beer, beef jerky, corn chips, cherry pies, and spring salad mix certain he had misheard their earlier conversation. He hadn't really been paying attention before and surely there are many words that sound like blood and cattle mutilations. His mind blanked as he tried to come up with some examples to rationalize it away.

    “Would you like to open a Big-Mart credit card and save 20% on your order today?” He said automatically.  God he hated saying that for every customer, but Liz was a real stickler about pushing it and he was tired of her badgering him about it. To his surprise Leather Guy seemed to stop and consider it. Tall Guy glanced at his friend and cut in before Leather could answer.

    “No. No thank you. We're fine.”

    Leather looked at Tall and jutted his chin up a little. Tall looked him in the eye and clenched his jaw and gave an almost imperceptible shake of his head. Leather rolled his eyes practically screaming 'whatever' in his body language. Looking back at James he gave a slight smirk and repeated what Tall said. “We're fine.”

    Slightly baffled by the change in his routine (most people say no before he got out more than 4 or 5 words) he puzzled out the interaction as he totaled the sale. Leather seemed to want to cause mischief, probably about the credit card, and Tall stopped him with a 'behave' look.

    James handed them their change as Leather grabbed the plastic bags from the carousal and Tall went back to his phone. Moving on to the next customer his sharp hearing caught the beginning of their conversation as they left and his stolen blood nearly froze in his veins.

    “OK now tell me why you think this is a vampire problem?”

    “Well according to the Coroner's report from the body six months ago...” Tall's voice faded as they left the store.

    Vampire! He said Vampire! Did they know? About him? About Ava? About the Evil that killed them both? Were they vampires themselves or were they more like Van Helsing, the man that killed vampires? Was he in danger or was his only lead walking out the door right now? He yearned to follow them and demand answers but was frozen with fear with what those answers would mean for him.

    “Excuse me!” a demanding voice broke into his thoughts. A short woman who looked as if irritated was her default mode glared at him. “You gonna ring me up or just stare? I'm busy and need to get going!” He automatically started ringing up the full cart of groceries she had pushed into the 20 items or less lane. Realizing he either dodged a bullet or missed an opportunity he returned to his job.

    ******

    Break-time found him quietly sipping 'Tomato Juice' though a straw in the lunchroom. He found the straw useful as his fangs sometimes came down when he ate and the straw kept his mouth closed until he could get them to go back up again. Usually he kept his eyes down at the table but today they drifted to his coworkers around him as he thought over the two odd customers he had in line today. Bits of conversation floated around him as he puzzled over whether he should track down the two men and how he could.

    “Asshole tried to grab my ass in the parking lot. Jerry said he got it on tape but there isn't much they can do. Just gotta keep an eye out and let security know if he comes back.” Jenny was telling a sympathetic friend.

    An inkling of an idea started to form in James' head. It was ridiculous. It would never work. Even if he could see the security footage, how would that help? On the other hand, how would it hurt? Glancing at the clock on the wall he considered what to tell Jerry so he'd let James watch the footage from the parking lot.

    ******

    Jerry stared at him suspiciously as James stuttered out his request to view the security footage from this evening.

    “It's just, you see, Jenny said there were these guys that tried to harass her, and um, there were these shady guys that came through my line, and, um, I just wanted to see if they were the ones that bothered her.” James shifted from foot to foot. God, he was so bad at lying. No way was this going to work.

    Jerry still just stared at him for the odd request. James knew the story was weak and was about to give up and flee the small room when inspiration struck.

    “Do...do you think it would impress her? I mean, if I helped identify the guys that bothered her?”

    Jerry's grin nearly split his face. It was obvious that he had suddenly thought he knew the real reason James was asking. “Sure man, I can help you out. But I gotta say, if these guys come back let security know. Don't try to take 'em on by yourself. Getting your ass handed to you won't impress anyone.”

    James agreed knowing that impressing Jenny wasn't a priority at all. As if he could even think of another woman after Ava. His heart wrenched at the thought of her.
    Rolling back the video James spotted the man in the leather coat and his friend. “There! There they are.” Suddenly he remembered his cover story, “Are they the ones that bothered Jenny?”

    Jerry let the tape play as James watched the two men walk across the parking lot. He tracked their progress to a black classic looking beast of a car. “Nope, sorry man. Doesn't look like they are the ones bugging Jenny. Lucky too. For you, I mean. I wouldn't wanna go a couple rounds with them.” James looked up from the monitor to Jerry. Jerry shrugged, “They look like they could dish out a good beating.” He looked James' slight frame up and down, clearly thinking that James couldn't take a punch from a boy scout, let alone two men that looked fit and fighting trim. “No offense, man.”

    “Guess you're right Jerry. Thanks anyway.” James said as he watched the black beast turn out of the parking lot and down a road. Not much down that road thought James. Corporate park mostly, and a few motels.

    ******

    3am saw James in the parking lot trying to decide what to do. It would be a bit of a hike, but he knew he could do it easy. He could go and check out the 2 hotels and cheap motel just on the other side of the corporate park. That car would be easy to spot again. If there were here for a vampire problem then they would be staying in town.  But then what? What would he do if he found them? Introduce himself? Bad idea. He may have misunderstood the whole conversation in the store. Maybe they were actors or authors. Maybe it was a theoretical conversation. Who actually believed in things like vampires? He almost talked himself out of going down that road. With a snort of disgust at his own indecision he marched off toward the distant corporate park. Just a quick look, then he could go home.

    The economic downturn hit this area hard. Most of the buildings were empty and desolate. Dark and still, barely a sound was heard even to James' sharp ears. That's why the shuffling sound which would have been imperceptible to human ears came so clearly to him. He glanced to the darkened ally where he thought he heard the sound. Shaking his head he turned back to the road that would take him to the motel. A muffled “omf” followed more shuffling but it was the startled cry of pain that had him turning back to the ally that wrapped between buildings and disappeared into the shadows. Making up his mind he slipped silently into the dark and looked around the corner to where the soft noises were coming from.
    His eyes adjusted to the dark swiftly these days. He saw a large man swing and punch another man in the face. His punching bag had his back to James but he recognized the black leather jacket from the man he waited on earlier today. Leather Guy's legs buckled under the blow and started to slide to the ground.  The big man had a fist bunched in this shirt and slammed him back up on the hood of the black car. He swing and hit Leather in the face again. Leather's hand fell slack and a large knife, nearly a sword, hit the ground in a clatter.

    “Hey! Hey you!” James yelled before even thinking. “Stop! Knock it off!”

    The stranger paused mid-swing and looked right at James. Rows of sharp teeth gleamed at James. Dropping his hold on the man, he stalked toward James. The man slunk to the ground but James could see him trying to get his feet under him. James gulped as the vampire bore down on him. He didn't know how to fight. Never been in a fight in his life till that night six months ago, and that didn't exactly go his way.

    “Whoa, um wait a minute man,” James put up his hands in a placating gesture. “We-, we can talk about this...” God it sounded stupid. The vampire even smirked a bit at it. He lunged at James and pinned him against the wall of the building. He opened his mouth wide and angled for James' throat. James closed his eyes and waited for the fangs to rip out his throat...again. But it never did. The arms pinning him to the building went slack and James opened his eyes. He didn't see the vampire. The first thing he saw was the man with the huge knife standing in front of him. He was confused because he could still feel the vampire's arms on him. Knowing somehow that he didn't want to look, he glanced down. The vampire's body was still leaning against him. But just it's body. The head was now somewhere near the feet of the man with the knife.

    “You killed him,” James gasped.

    “You're welcome.” The man replied looking around trying to see into the shadows around them.

    “You chopped off his head!” James was aware he was becoming a little hysterical, but all he could think was this guy killed a vampire with barely any hesitation and seemed completely unfazed by it. James was a vampire. Would this man kill him just as matter of factually? Had he just made a fatal mistake by helping him?
    “Only way to kill a vampire.” He suddenly looked at James suspiciously. “Who are you? What are you doing out here?”

    “Um,” James was still staring at the vampire. His mind was spinning as he tried to remember the name on his name badge.  “I, um, I'm Jay. I work at the Big-Mart. I was on my way home when I heard, I thought I heard, uh...”

    “Yeah, okay, I get the idea.” The man said turning back to the shadows. “Look, thanks for the assist, but you need to get out of here.”

    “Um okay, sure.” James grabbed his backpack off the ground where it had fallen and avoided looking at the dead vampire. The smell of blood wafted on the wind. He tried not to think about how hungry it made him.

    The man moved off deeper into the darkness. “Sam.” he whisper called in a deep grunt. “Sammy! Dammit Sam, where are you?” he muttered that last to himself.
    The smell of warm fresh blood came back stronger from the opposite direction the man was going in. Couldn't he smell it?

    “Hey, um, Guy? I think I...” Don't say smell, he told himself. Smell sounds too weird, “hear something. Over there.” James pointed in the direction the smell of blood was coming from.

    The man came back from where he had started to walk. He gave James a puzzled look, hesitated  a moment and headed in the direction James pointed.

    Testing the handle on the door, the man found it unlocked. Taking a stronger grip on his knife he eased the door open. It wasn't just the smell of blood that nearly bowled James over. It was the smell of fear, of death. Of Prey. He didn't want to go in there, the smell was gonna drive him mad. He shut his eyes, frantic to resist its call. It didn't help that he could hear the heart pounding, warm and strong, in the chest of the man before him. Leather Guy took several hits and was bleeding from little cuts all over and James could smell each one. The little slice across his eyebrow, the split lip, the swollen knuckles.

    Struck from behind he fell forward into the cooling pool of blood. Ava's blood. It was everywhere. His cheek landed in it with a squish of the saturated carpet. The sick smell of rusty iron was everywhere. He struggled up and away from the pool that still held a hint of warmth from Ava's body when the evil landed on him from behind.

    The memory of Ava's blood snapped him back into focus. He was able to fight back the hunger that had started to make his fangs drop. He tore his eyes away from the fluttering pulse just below the vulnerable neck of the man ahead of him.
    The darkened office building had a surprising amount of furniture and office flotsam still in it. Papers scattered the floors, chairs were stacked in the corners and knocked over onto the ground. A few desks stood like barren islands in the debris that surrounded them. A crash sounded down the hall and the man sprinted toward the sound, ghosting around office obstacles and making no sound. James followed, but found himself bumping into an overturned trashcan and trampling crumbled papers. He winced at the noise he made. Another crash and the wall beside him visibly shuttered. The man seemed to locate the door he was looking for and tried the handle. When it didn't budge he took a step back from the door and kicked it. Hard. The flimsy press-board splintered at the impact and buckled inward. The man charged in with knife held high. James stood in the hall and nervously looked into the room. The man seemed to recklessly charge into the room. After the night James ran through the bedroom door to Ava's side he felt he could never charge blind into a room again.

    The activity in the room was frantic and confusing. It took more time than James was willing to admit just to figure out how many people were even in the room. The man James had followed into the building was standing over another. James belatedly realized it was the tall friend of his from the store and likely the missing 'Sam' he had been looking for. The man was holding back 3 others with swings of his knife. His friend struggled to his feet with a hand braced against the wall. Crumbling dry wall attested to the fact that something had been slammed into it several times already. The glazed look in Sam's eyes suggested that the something had been Sam. The man punched and swung the knife keeping the creatures at bay and away until Sam was able to stoop and grab his own machete from where it had fallen and join the fight.

    James felt completely useless as the two dispatched the 3 remaining vampires with what looked like practiced ease. He backed slowly into the hallway and away from the two men who so easily cut heads from other creatures.

    “Dean! Behind you!” Sam called when he caught James' movement into the hall. James stumbled back and tripped over a chair, pinwheeling his arms and flailing to land in a heap on the ground.

    “Easy Sammy. He's a civilian.” Dean's hand on Sam's arm proved unnecessary as Sam halted his swing, confused by James' ungraceful performance. “We need to get everyone out of here.”

    “There's other people here?” James asked as he untangled his legs from the computer chair. He was surprised that he could keep his voice from shaking in front of the two obviously dangerous men.

    Sam held out a hand and helped James to his feet. “Sometimes a nest keeps a few victims alive for a fresh source of food.” Sam and Dean traded a look. Sam looked back at James. “Look, we'd rather you get out of here, but we just can't walk you out right now and even tho I think there's only one vamp left, I'd rather not risk it.”
    Dean looked at James. “Think you can handle a blade?” he asked. James looked blankly at the knife. He was lucky if he knew what end to hold. Dean nodded at his blank look. “That's what I thought.” Dean dug into a pocket of his coat and pulled out a couple large syringes filled with a dark fluid. “Dead man's blood. Its like a Vampire tranquilizer dart.”

    James took the needles with trepidation. Having some sort of defense made him feel slightly more confident. Dead man's blood is a tranquilizer? He never read that anywhere in any myth. Who were these people?

    James looked back at the two men. “Who are you guys?”

    Sam smirked. “That is a good question. One we don't have time for.” He turned to his friend. “There is at least one more left. He took off down that way when the other three jumped me.” He took a few steps and stumbled a little.

    Dean grabbed his arm. “Dude, you okay?”

    Sam braced himself against the wall and gingerly shook his head as if it hurt and he was trying to shake it off. He must have gotten his bell rung something fierce. Now that he thought of it, both men were looking a bit battered. Sam rubbed his face as if trying to get his eyes to focus or to dispel a headache. He pushed himself off the wall, “Yeah, I'm fine. Let's just get this done.” Dean gave him an assessing look then just nodded and led the way down the hall.

    A heavy metal door was the last in the hall. All the other doors had been weak press-board wood that led to small offices. Both men took a position on either side of the door and Dean slowly pushed it open. Concrete floor and corrugated steel walls formed what looked like a factory floor. Large machinery hulked silently in the shadows.

    Dean ghosted silently to the right while Sam moved along the wall to the left. James stood uncertainly at the door not sure what to do. A syringe in his hand he put the second needle into his vest pocket. He prayed he wouldn't jab himself with it. Figuring the two men had the sides covered, he tried to move quietly up the center. He wanted to see what was going on without being seen himself.

    Hearing a whimper from just in front of him, he dropped to the ground behind some beast of a machine. Peeking slowly around the edge he saw the back of an extremely large man. Broad and thick with muscles like a linebacker, the man was grabbing and pulling at something James couldn't see. Ducking back behind the machine James struggled not to let his ragged breathing make a sound. The man was a GIANT! What on earth did James think he could accomplish against that kind of enemy? The tiny tube of dead man's blood in his hand looked so small and pathetic, just like James.

    “I know you're there. I can smell the warmth of your flesh. Come out or I snap her neck and drink her dry.” The giant said. Did he see me? Did I just screw up this whole thing? Shear panic flooded James. Her! He had a hostage What do I do? Give myself up for her? He couldn't bear to see another person die.

    Before he could decide to move he heard Dean's voice. “Hurt her and you'll be lucky if all I do is kill you.” The menace in the man's voice was cold and terrifying. There was no doubt in James' mind that this man could and would tear the giant to pieces if he had to.

    “She'll still be dead.” taunted the vampire. James risked another glance around the machine. Dean stood just outside of the shadows, knife in hand and eyes locked with the vampire. The giant had a girl in front of him. Child really. She was maybe 12 years old, but so weak and pale she looked younger. One hand was cupped around her throat and jaw. The other fisted in her hair. He shook her slightly to add emphasis to his words. “Care to live with her death on your hands?” he sneered and another weak whimper escaped the child. Keeping his eyes on Dean he bent down to the child's neck and licked just behind her ear. His fangs played lightly on the skin there.

    Dean clenched his jaw and held up his hands in surrender. “All right. Fine. Just let the girl go.”

    “Drop it and kick it away.” ordered the vamp still hunched over the child. Dean moved very slowly, keeping his eyes on the vampire. He set the blade on the ground but before he could kick it away the vampire spun away, yanking the girl by her hair and throat with him. James was left looking at his back again. “Stop right there!” he roared. Sam stopped dead from where he had tried to come up from behind the vamp taking advantage of Dean's distraction. “Drop it!” A mew of pain came from the child. James couldn't see what he had done to her to cause it tho. A scrape of metal on stone and Sam placed his blade on the ground too. “You damn fools think you can sneak up on me?” His eyes darted between both Sam and Dean trying to keep them both in sight. “I can smell the heat of your blood! Now me and this pretty thing,” the girl made another piteous mew, “are gonna back up nice and easy. If you try and follow, all you'll find of her is entrails.” He took a slow step backwards. One more and he would trip over James.

    This would have to be it. It had to work. He may only get one shot at this. James stood up, took one step into the aisle, and plunged the syringe into the vampire's back. Roaring with pain and anger, the vampire whirled around to face James, the girl falling to the ground momentarily forgotten.

    James scrambled away from the enraged creature. The vampire grabbed him by the front of his shirt and THREW him through the air and into Sam who had stooped to retrieve his blade. Luckily for James he hadn't gotten a hold of it yet or James might have been skewered on it. James scrambled to get off Sam, but Sam had taken a pretty bad blow and was decidedly dazed by it. Blinking owlishly he rolled over on his hands and knees but when he tried to stand he wobbled back down to the ground.

    Dean picked up his knife and charged the vampire, making a target of himself again to give Sam a chance to get back on his feet. He brought the knife down in a chopping motion toward the vamp's neck. The vampire brought up his left arm to deflect the blow and batted Dean away with his right  Dean struck the edge of a machine hard and went down in a crumple.

    The vampire bore down on James, fury in every step. James grabbed up Sam's fallen blade and held it uncertainly before him. How long was it gonna take for the dead man's blood to have an effect?  He took a few steps away from Sam and backed away from the vampire. This was it. He was done for. He never should have gotten involved. Never should have followed the two men. Movement behind the vampire caught his eye for a second. The child had made her way to Dean's side and was shaking him, trying to rouse him. Maybe he could stall for time. Maybe the girl still had a chance to get away. He waved the blade at the giant hoping to keep him at bay.

    The monster lunged at James, one hand grabbing his neck, the other on the wrist holding the blade. He reared his head back giving James full view of his many sharp teeth before sinking them into James' body. James cried out in pain and struggled against him. He hadn't ripped out James' throat mostly because he had his hand on it slowly choking James. Or it would be choking him if James had still been human and needed to breathe. As the vampire tore at the tendons at his collarbone, James pulled the second syringe from his vest. Realizing something wasn't right about his victim the vamp pulled back to look at James. His eyes were glassy and unfocused. Was the dead man's blood finally having an effect on him?

    “What... what are you?”

    “Good question, but not one I have time for.” James gasped out and plunged the second vial into the vamp's chest. The mountain of a monster folded to the ground releasing James who staggered against the wall to keep his balance.
    As the vampire sunk to his knees his head suddenly fell off. That's an odd reaction to dead man's blood, James thought dazedly.

    “Hey, man, you okay?” Someone said to him. Tall Guy, what was his name?, was looking at him worriedly. The ground was starting to tilt under James' feet and he wondered if he was going into shock. That would explain why he hadn't noticed Sam take off the vamp's head, Dean's blade in his hands. Dean himself was in the background with both hands braced on the machine he had landed against. The girl had both arms around his waist.

    James looked at Sam who seemed to be going in and out of focus. “I think I'm gonna be sick.” he told him.

    Sam gave him a sympathetic smile. “Just breathe deep. I'll get that shoulder patched up. Doesn't look too bad, it's not even bleeding that hard.” James nodded his thanks as Sam bound the cuts in his shoulder. The cuts didn't bleed that hard because he was low on blood and hadn't eaten since his lunch break, but Sam didn't need to know that. James could see Dean slipping his coat over the girl's slight frame.

    “Is it over? Is it done?” James asked Sam, cringing a little at the catch in his voice. His courage was just about tapped out and all he wanted was to go home and hide for a week.

    “Yeah I think so. Me and Dean will make a last sweep of the area, but I think that was the last of them.”

    James looked at his bandaged shoulder. “He bit me.” It was such a bestial attack. Was he destined to be that one day? Just an animal? Could he hang on to humanity and avoid becoming a monster? Was it possible for him to stay a person?

    Mistaking James' question Sam tried to comfort him. “Most vampire lore is BS. You can't become one just from a bite. You have to bite back or have vamp blood pored into your mouth or something like that. You'll be okay.”

    James nodded weakly. So that's how it happened all that time ago. He bit the evil back and that had infected him. His mind was still reeling as he worried about what he might become. Maybe he should tell these men. Maybe they could help. He was a monster after all.

    “Look,” Sam continued. “You mind taking the girl to the hospital? And when the police come, do us a favor and don't mention us. Do yourself a favor too and don't mention vampires. They may lock you up in an asylum if you go talking about monsters. Just say you saw this girl getting beat up and chased off the thugs.” Sam looked hard at James' shocked face. “You saved her life, you know that, right? Help her a little more and get her back to her family.”

    “Uh... uh okay...” Saved her life? I guess I kinda did. Scared out of his mind the whole time, but he did it. Managed to get between the evil and the victim. It might not make up for not being able to save Ava, but maybe it could make up for being a monster.

    ******

    Work on Saturday was different. By then everyone had heard about the little girl who James had saved.  Thomas was telling everyone how his 'best friend Jay' was a hero and if he had his way would have people believing he had been there too. Liz was happy to announce that it was the wonderful training of Big-Mart that gave him the strength of character required to save the child.

    James was very uncomfortable with all the attention. Someone hiding under an assumed name and disguising what he was couldn't afford that. He hid in the back freezer room of the meat department draining off what blood he could from the carcasses that came in to be processed. Maybe it was time to move on. Get out of this town. It was a scary thought, but he faced down evil and saved the girl. Uprooting paled in comparison.

    He shoved the jug of blood under the counter as he heard the freezer door open. Liz walked in. “Jay, I'm so thrilled to have caught you for a moment.” She had never been 'thrilled' to see him before. “I'd like to find out what day would be good for you. I know you prefer night shifts, but we can gather more people during the afternoon hours. I was thinking maybe a half hour speech, then time for press pictures...”

    James looked a bit stunned. “Good day for what?”

    “Oh! They haven't told you yet? The Big-Mart family wants to recognize your heroic deeds. We would like you to give a small speech on how Big-Mart helped you become the type of person who can do such a wonderful things!” Liz was all smiles, as if this was some great honor to work minimum wage and put up with micro managing petty tyrants.

    Making up his mind he suddenly grinned at Liz. “Liz, I quit.” He took off his vest with the name tag that read 'Jay', laid it on the counter, picked up his 'tomato juice' and walked out the door. Sure he was scared to start over again, but he knew he could do it. He could be what he was, and still be human. And if he couldn't, there were people out there who could take care of that too. It was a morbid thought, but for some reason it comforted him. Let's see how many monsters I can take care of, before I need to be taken care of. James smiled.

      Current date/time is Sun Dec 16, 2018 2:15 am