Thursday, April 11, 2019
Take a Bite Outta Crime Part 21 by Dellani Oakes
Drea recognizes one of the men, as the man who accosted her in the shop. He tries to get away, and is arrested. The vampires decide to show Sandra who and what they are, so she understands their predicament.
Sandra took a deep breath, exhaling slowly. "Go ahead."
Drea allowed her fangs to grow slowly. Her features changed slightly, becoming pale and hollow cheeked. Her eyes were no longer their normal blue, but an eerie red tinged brown.
Sandra's eyes grew wide, her nostrils flared with fear. She backed away, her hand reaching for the door. Kirk gently touched her arm, but she flinched away. Drea changed back quickly. Dizzy, she staggered back a step. Kirk placed a capsule in her hand. Putting it under her tongue, she relaxed as the medication hit her system.
"You're—vampires?" Sandra breathed huskily, quickly. "My God! It's like a nightmare!"
"No," Drea said. "Not us. Whoever is hunting us, they're the true nightmare. Our people live on synthetic blood. We take medicine to control the blood lust, and never turn anyone without their consent."
"How do I know I can trust you?"
Drea smiled benevolently. "We've taken you into our confidence, Sandra. We haven't attacked you, nor do we intend to. However, that man you've arrested has killed at least one person and is either responsible for, or has knowledge of, the kidnapping of at least a dozen more."
"Do you think that the others are dead?"
"I fear so," Kirk said. "What reason would they have to kidnap them otherwise? They haven't asked for ransom."
"I'm confused," Sandra admitted quietly. "You have to admit, this is a lot to absorb like this."
"We understand completely," Kirk said. "Believe me, it wasn't easy for me to accept when Drea first told me."
"He threatened to tell," Drea added. "It wasn't easy to keep him quiet without hurting him. It took all my persuasive power to keep him from waking the entire household."
"She put up a very convincing argument," Kirk replied with a sly grin. "She took off all her clothes."
Sandra laughed loudly, the fear gone from her. "That would about do it. Most men are pretty easy to convince, when you're naked."
Drea giggled. "Not that he got to do more than look—I wasn't modest, but I certainly wasn't a slattern. I had to promise to come back for visits. We talked for hours at a time and eventually, we fell in love." She brushed Kirk's hair from his brow.
"It was at that point she offered to turn me. How could I refuse? How often is a man given the chance to be with his soul mate forever?"
Sandra couldn't conceal a little sigh when he kissed his wife.
"You make it sound so romantic. Don't you ever...? I mean, aren't you tempted...?"
"To drink human blood?" Drea asked. "Not often, unless we skip our medicine. Then, we're no better than the animals who prey on humans. What sets our group apart is that we found ways to live in harmony with humans rather than use them."
"I promise to look into this," Sandra said. "I'll help you find them." She squinted at them a moment, thinking. "You know, I think I might be able to help you. We can set up a surveillance team to watch you while you work undercover."
"We can't ask that, Sandra," Drea began.
"Why not? It's my job. This is in my jurisdiction, and you've come to me with a crime that's connected to something I was already working on."
"We don't want to get you in trouble," Kirk replied.
"You won't. My boss is a good guy and he's rather fond of me. I am his favorite niece, after all." She winked. "Now, let's see what we can do. Do you need a ride home?"
"Yes, we do."
"Okay. I'll have one of my men take you. Once I have a team assembled, I'll contact you and we'll coordinate our efforts. I normally wouldn't work with civilians, but we can't get anyone in there fast enough."
"Don't worry. We're resourceful and quite a few of us have military training."
"Really? What about you?"
"I wasn't always a chef," Kirk said, adjusting his jacket. "I was a soldier in the Dutch War of Independence, also called the Eighty Years War. I fought during the resurgence in the late 1580's. After I got wounded, I went home and was a hired hand in a great house of one of the generals. That's where Drea found me. She was a friend of the general's top aide."
"Military service in modern times has changed some," Sandra pointed out.
Kirk smiled gently. "And I've been in the military on and off since," he replied. "Most recently in Vietnam, but that presented difficulties. It was hard to get my medicine."
"How on earth did you manage?" Sandra asked. "Surely the bit where the sun will roast you...?"
"Myth," Kirk said. "Though we do burn easily. No skin pigmentation. Rather like being an albino. The lotion restores our color and protects our skin."
"Garlic? Stake through the heart?" Sandra asked, backing away slightly.
"Garlic is delicious," Kirk replied. "I use it a lot in my cooking. Aside from repelling with one's breath, it has no affect on a vampire."
© 2019 Dellani Oakes
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