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I was amazed how quickly my dad found a new house for us after he was told where his job was headed. I never really try to understand what anyone want...

PREVIEW: Jack in the Box

September 13, 2018

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Stephanie

Wednesday, February 28, 2018

I hear the bedroom door close, the padding of Stephanie’s feet marking her crossing across the room towards the bed. I remained still, reading my copy of Les Miserable, idly chewing on a piece of gum that I’d found in the dresser drawer. I took a moment to pause my reading and looked up at Stephanie, who was now sitting on the bed, combing out her long blonde hair.

 

Dressed in a long maroon shirt bearing an extensive view of her legs, I frown; has she lost weight? I didn’t want to think about if she’d been dieting or exercising… I like my women with a bit of meat on their bones. I go back to reading from my philosophy book, mouthing the words as I scanned through them in the dim lighting.

 

“I went to the store today,” Stephanie said, turning to look at her as she grabbed a bottle of lotion, squirting some of the oily substance into her hands.

 

“Oh?” James said, already lying in bed, a book held up in his hands bearing the title “Dreamcatcher”, an interesting read by Stephen King from a few years ago that's been made into a movie. I approved of his choice in reading the material and made a mental note to re-read the novel when I got home.

 

“Yeah, I got some more of this lotion that came in the gift basket,” she said, rubbing her hands up and down her tanned legs. “It was a little pricey, but this is the best lotion I’ve ever had!”

 

“What’s in it?” James asked, closing his book with his thumb pressed between the pages. “And just how pricey is it?”

 

“About forty dollars a bottle,” Stephanie admitted sheepishly, rubbing her arms as she spoke. “As for what’s in it, I know cocoa butter, coconut oil, aloe… it has a ton of ingredients, and it's all natural as well! Whoever sent it to me really wanted me to be impressed.”

 

“Probably one of those college boys you teach, falling for their cute little professor.” James joked, taking the offered bottle and turning it over to read. “Damn, that is a lot of stuff… and it even has a nutritional value chart, for vitamins and minerals it gives you.”

 

I smirk, tucking my legs up under myself as I nestle in deeper in the darkness. Good guess about the college student I must admit, but yet still so far off. I pull one of the silver coins from my pocket and slide it around my pliable fingers, savoring how my talons hook onto the metal as it passes them. The silver had gone good ways to purchasing the requisite materials needed to lavish my beauty with, in order to make her ready for when I’d steal her away into the night. I just hoped this one saw reason and didn’t scream… I hate screamers.

 

Stephanie sets the bottle on her nightstand and pulls off her glasses, sighing as she lifts the covers and slips into the bed. I can smell James and his arousal from here, but with all of the chemicals seeping into her skin (and scalp, if she was using the shampoo) the last thing on her mind would be her libido.

 

She begs off having sex with merely a session of romantic heavy petting, making me all the more annoyed as I now had to wait even longer. Pulling a pocket watch from my side, I read off the time and shake my head. This won’t do at all.

 

Crash!

 

A shattering of glass echoes from downstairs, the five hooligans I’d given thirty pieces of silver to in exchange for robbing this house and assaulting anyone in it.

 

My standard offer that was made whenever I made the time to do this. It was a good offer then, and it’s a great offer now, what with how mineral prices have skyrocketed. I slowly uncoil from my place within the closet as James, fucking James, reaches for the phone next to him and tries to make a call.

 

No signal. Like I hadn’t thought of jamming the signal when I planned this.

 

“James, the alarm hasn’t gone off. Did you set the alarm?” Stephanie whispered one hand on his shoulder as he pushed her back as if hiding beneath the covers would save her from anything.

I remember finding the main line for the alarm and severing them three days ago, reattaching the cords to a battery that would let the security company believe everything was alright. That sat on the outside of their house behind some bushes, something that won’t likely be discovered for some time. It took them two weeks last time to report such a discovery on the news.

 

James reaches over to his side table and pulls a drawer, withdrawing an older model handgun. A Luger, if I’m not mistaken. Color me surprised, I must say I’m impressed. I hadn’t pictured the meek and mild James to have the gall to own a gun. I wonder if he knows how to use it? I’m half tempted to emerge right now and test the theory, but for this to work, I need him out of the room.

 

I need Stephanie alone.

 

Humming, I begin slowly secreting the pheromones into the air that cause panic and fear, pheromones I’d developed back before the Great War. The Germans were an industrious people and they did much to pioneer many of the technologies we have today. A small amount of my being will always tip my hat to the Germans, though what they did later in the Second Conflict was beyond disgraceful. I’m ashamed that some if not all of my original blood was German at times. But I digress…

 

I watch as James steps out of the room, to confront the invaders with his luger, while Stephanie takes a pillow and hugs it to her supple frame tightly, worried for her husband. I smile at that thought… won’t mean much soon I suppose.

 

My pheromones have saturated the room I can tell… her heart beat is racing, her eyes are darting back and forth at every sound, slight or imagined. Paranoia is setting in as she hears the loud crashing coming from the ground floor. I close my eyes and pull a small one-button box from my pocket, a short distance transmitter to a small-cased explosive.

 

That I’d hidden in their breaker box last night.

 

Pressing the button, a large crash echoes from downstairs as the lights go out, evening the playing field for every person about to be involved in the skirmish. I slowly push open the closet door, silently pulling it back as Stephanie looks around the room in a panic. I slink out onto the carpet, moving closer to her as I begin pumping out pheromones that increase heart rate and glandular functions. I come to a squatting position at the end of the bed, my bare feet allowing me to balance perfectly on the carpet.

 

“Who’s there?” She says loudly, looking around in my general direction.

 

My, I had thought myself quiet. Pity that. “Just an angel my dear, here to take you away from all of this. Is that what you want? To be safe?”

 

“Who the hell are you? Where’s James? James!” She shrieks, causing me to shake my head.

I’d had my doubts about reasoning with her, so I do the next best thing and scuttle up her comforter, lashing out with my hands to grip her arms as she wildly swings them. Now I’m on top of her, pheromones blasting into her face in a rather risky dosage…I’ll need to make this quick.

Raising her arms above her head, I pin them there before reaching into my pocket to pull a syringe. I take the tip off with my teeth and press the plunger once to rid it of any air bubbles, before I stab into her thigh and press down, pumping her full of Ativan.

 

The cocktail of endorphins and chemicals sluicing through her send her body into quakes, earning a cry of success from me. Quickly, I press a talon deep into her ceratoid artery, pressing my mouth over the wound before pulling my claw aside. The blast of liquid heat gushes through my narrow teeth, something that I happily allow as I guzzle down the initial few pumps of her pulsating heart. My mind grows dizzy from the Ativan as it hits me, a slight euphoric cloud laying waste over my other senses as I continue to drain the life from her twitching form.

 

Her skin, after a while, become crinkly and dry, peeling back from the surprisingly clean wound to reveal nothing but a withered body, wracked over on its side, contorted in pain. Through my glazed over eyes, I stare at her, brushing a lock of hair from over her face to behind her ear. I hear gunshots, fighting downstairs but choose to ignore it as I sit with my angel as she slowly dies, slipping from an unconscious state into a state of preternatural death. Leaning forward, I slide my tongue into the wet hole my talon had created and, through great reluctance; I begin pumping the blood back into her body, one hand reaching into my pocket for another needle, this one full of adrenaline. As her body grows flushed once more, her tanned skin filling out slowly, I press the needle into her chest, between her ribs, and into her heart, before pushing the plunger.

 

Life.

 

Life is once again sparked within the body though this time not by some benign God nor a reckless couple… this life comes tainted with the supposed curse I carry, a curse that promises an eternal life with little to few needs. She would awaken soon, flushed with anxieties, euphoric desires, energy, and hunger.

 

Oh the hunger, how can it be described? To my lesser kin it is a pox, a mark of shame that they carry with them wherever they go, the lingering desires to feed on any stray human always tingling at their fingertips. When they can hold back no longer that go on a spree of killings, draining the blood from body after body, gliding on the chemical high we receive from the blood of a panicked victim. This sadly leads to messy ends, some that involve my own subtle hand.

But, seeing as Yahweh cornered me into my own niche, forcing me to be what I am, I persevere as intended. I create more as I see fit, new brides every fifteen or twenty years. Hopefully, I think as I scoop up Stephanie’s body in my arms, careful not to mar her further with my talons, this one will last thirty or forty.

 

I like this one.

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