Vampire Boys Of Summer
I took a seat by the window right behind Mr Ed. To my relief, nobody seemed that concerned about me. There were no snickers or guarded whispers like I thought there would be. Maybe the talk of what kind of slaughter I could expect had died down. That’s the thing about school. News travels fast, but interest sometimes fades just as quick. Of course, the internet would probably be buzzing tonight with news about Amanda’s beating. Though I think she more than deserved it, I was hoping the damage wasn’t too severe. The more she got hurt, the more likely she’d try to hurt you back. After the post it note on my locker, I was going to have to be more vigilant in the days ahead.
“Hey Nora, heads up”, someone yelled, and on instinct I ducked. Instead of some projectile however, a body plopped down in the seat beside me. I looked over. It was Colin Deeds, he of the mismatched clothes and uncombed hair. He slung his book bag into his lap and for a moment I thought he’d injure himself it was so loaded with books.
“Missed my bus,“ he explained. “Can I sit with you?”
“Sure, go ahead,“ I mumbled. After the verbal abuse I’d given him the day before I was surprised he would even ask, but I guess he figured if he was with me no one would pick on him out of fear of my new friend Chi.
“Heard about Amanda,“ he said. “About time.”
“Don’t say that too loud. She still wins popularity points.”
He ducked down in his seat a little. “Oh yeah.”
The bus pulled away from the curb and we started the long way home. Since he rode the same bus as Angela, it was going to be a longer trip for him today.
“So, did you just snap or something?”
“Way I heard it, you really kicked her butt.”
“I didn’t do it.”
He looked at me strange. “You didn’t? That’s not what everyone is saying.”
“It was a girl named Chi.”
“Chi? Never heard of her.”
“Oh.” He looked at his watch. “Well, you better watch out then. Trumps are liable to think you’re spreading stories that you did it.”
I turned to look at him and my mean streak came out. “Don’t you ever take a bath?”
That shut him up for a moment. He looked like I had hit him with a brick. His eyes welled up with tears. I felt bad that I had been so harsh, but he always brought out that side of me. Maybe it was because of his weakness and cowardly ways that made me talk down to him so much.
“You don’t have to be so mean,“ he said, getting up to move. “One day you’ll wish you had a friend like me.” He moved a couple rows away and sat down in an empty seat.
I inwardly beat myself up over how cruel I’d been. He had just been trying to help and I had insulted him; lashed out for no reason other than I thought I was better than him. I shook my head. I was just like Amanda Trump. I almost got up then and there and said I was sorry, but something, call it pride I suppose, wouldn’t let me.
Colin got off at the first stop.
Late afternoon. I sat on the front porch step. Dummy me had either forgotten or lost the front door key. Mom wouldn’t be home until later. I didn’t know what time she’d gone in to work, so who knew how long I’d have to wait. I guess I could have climbed the tree outside my window, but if I fell this time, there wouldn’t be a strong vampire boy there to catch me. I’d looked over at the house next door when I first got home, but Haru wasn’t out. Neither was the Jigsaw Man. Across the street at Mrs. Winston’s, the house itself looked asleep. I wondered what Ryo was doing over there. I hadn’t seen the old lady of the house since he’d arrived. For a moment, I caught an image in my head of the shirtless vampire sleeping in a coffin. I could see his heartbeat under his tattoo, as sweat glistened his body. A rivulet of moisture seemed to run from chest to abs, before disappearing under the band of his jeans.
Across the street, the front door swung open and it shocked me out of my nearly pornographic thought. Someone stepped out on the porch, and at first I thought it was Ryo come to answer my daydream , but it was somebody else. The person seemed hesitant to come out into the daylight, but they soon walked down the steps onto the front walk. It was a young guy, about my age, or maybe a year older. I didn’t recognize him as someone from my school, but to be honest, I didn’t know every single person there. The guy was sickly pale, as if he was suffering from a bad case of the flu.
“Hey, what’s up?” A voice said from beside me. I almost jumped out of my skin it had startled me so. I turned to the intruder of my private curiosity and saw that it was Haru. He was casually dressed in gray khakis and a white button up shirt. “What you doing sitting all alone?”
I looked up at him and gave him a weak smile. “I got locked out.”
He smirked. “So, you’d figure you’d spy on the house across the street.”
“I wasn’t spying,“ I replied. “I just saw this boy come out and…” I turned to point to the boy in question, except he was gone. Distracted by Haru, I had lost sight of what had been going on over there.
Haru looked at me like maybe I had a screw loose. Then he smiled. “Well, Ryo always does like the attention.”
I wanted to tell him it wasn’t Ryo I had seen, but some kid who looked like he just saw his name written on a death note.
Haru sat down beside me. “Saw him talking to you last night,“ he said.
“What did he say?”
“Not a whole lot really.”
Haru nodded. “It’s okay, you don’t have to tell me. I can just about guess.” He stood up. “I’ll get the door for you.” He walked up to the front door and put his hand on the knob. He looked back at me. “Just a little advice, Nora. You can’t trust a vampire to always tell the truth. They’ve been living in lies and truth so much they aren’t sure which is which anymore.”
“Well, you’re a vampire,“ I reasoned.
He smiled, and for a brief moment I saw his teeth as his lips curled back. “Precisely.” He turned the knob and the door opened. “There you go.”
I wasn’t very surprised that the door opened for him like magic. I’d probably open up too if he touched me. I got up . “Thanks. I thought I was going to have to wait for mom.”
He shrugged. Somehow I thought I had lost his attention. Maybe it was the talk of Ryo that did it. Perhaps vampires were more competitive with each other than I thought. “See you around,“ he said, as he stepped off the porch.
“Yeah. See you,” I replied, wondering why I was getting the brush off so quickly.
Continue to Ep. 27
“Vampire Boys Of Summer” 2018 Paul D Aronson. All Rights Reserved.