I slipped in to the loneliness of my own sleeping area and ran my fingers through my hair. These creatures - vampires - humans - whatever - they got under my skin. I hated them for being able to crawl around in there - for being able to get in to my thoughts and cloud my judgement. But more than that, I hated them because of what one of them had done, all those years ago. When vampires were first 'uncovered' and the world had been terrified. 'We have lived amongst you for centuries' they had said in comforting voices. 'We wish you no harm.' The lies had rolled from their tongues like water from a duck's back.
I groaned and slipped my knife from the holder that was strapped around my calf. The blade gleamed but I pulled a rag out from under my pillow and began to clean it anyway. My most painful memory was surfacing.
"What do you think about vampires?" Nadia asked, swirling her spoon in her drink.
"I don't know. I guess they haven't done us much harm so far, and they've lived with us for years. Apart from the whole blood thing, they seem alright."
"You think? Don't you think they're monsters?"
"No. They're people, just really old and with weird diets." I laughed.
"Not everyone thinks the way you do."
"No one ever does."
"If you met one, if one tried to drink your blood, do you think you'd change your mind?"
"I don't know. I don't understand why they don't just drink that bagged stuff from the hospitals."
"Because it's cold and disgusting. Fresh, hot blood is the best."
I gave her a look and giggled.
"You sound like one of them."
"What if I am?"
"You're joking." I laughed. "You're not a vampire."
"I am." She said defiantly.
"No you're not. Besides, you don't have fangs. You don't drink blood. You eat pizza."
"Soph, I'm a vampire. I drink blood. And I'd like it if you let me drink yours." She leaned towards my neck, giggling.
I laughed and tilted my neck.
"Oh no! The bad vampire's going to get me!" I giggled. My little sister ran in and stopped dead in the doorway.
"Soph-eeey!" She cried and pointed towards Nadia. I looked over and saw fangs. Little, curved, pure white fangs. I yelped and jumped away.
"Told you." Nadia smirked. "I'm thirsty." Her eyes flicked to Katy and in the next second she was behind her and lifting her up by her hair. Katy screamed and I yelled.
"Nadia! What are you doing?"
"Having a drink." She laughed and grabbed my sister's flailing arms. Her teeth sank in to her flesh and Katy screamed.
"Stop!" I yelled but she just laughed and tightened her grip around my sister's throat. She was choking and I tried to get up but I was frozen. I watched as Nadia pinned her to the wall, cutting her skin, laughing all the while as Katy screamed and screamed and screamed...
"Sophia." I jumped and the blade in my hand cut my skin. I looked up and saw Jared's eyes flick hungrily to my hand momentarily before he closed them and took a deep breath. When he opened them again they had returned to normal. "Here." He took a cloth bandage from his pocket and held it out. I eyed it and him suspiciously before taking it.
"What do you want?" I asked, wrapping it round my hand.
"I brought you an ice pack. For your ribs. It will help." He held it out.
"There's nothing wrong with my ribs."
"How would you know?"
"I know. He was gripping you too hard for there not to be. I'm surprised they weren't cracked as it is." He put the ice pack down finally, having understood that I was not taking it from him. "Look, the newbie has a point. We're not all bad, and we're basically humans. It wouldn't kill you to remember that."
He stared at me, grimaced and withdrew. I waited until I thought he'd gone before I took the icepack and held it to my ribs. Pain flared and died to a numbing sensation. Damn vamp, he was right. But I knew it would kill me if I trusted them. It would kill me because I had done it before, and my sister had died.