My Story.Mature

Three years ago, I ‘changed’. Not in a spiritual way, there was no ‘voice of God’ or a sudden realisation that my life had no meaning. It happened all because of a mugging. A botched robbery, for my watch, wallet and mobile phone. If the fucker had asked for them, and just threatened, I would have probably handed them over. I would’ve hated myself afterwards, replayed the situation over and over, imagining what I could have done, how I could’ve handled the situation better etc. Instead, as I walked to my car, this idiot ‘bumped’ into me. I felt a dull ache in my ribs, on my side, then I felt like I needed to sit down, which was strange. What was stranger, was the guy who had bumped into me. He stood there, looking at me like he was waiting for something. Then, it all went fuzzy as I began to black out. I remember that the guy went through my pockets. Bastard took my watch. That had been my 21st birthday present. My mobile phone was next. And then my wallet.

A friend of mine found me, collapsed on the floor next to my car. He tried to pick me up, and recoiled when his hand was soaked in my blood. The next thing I remember, after hearing him tell me that everything would be fine and that he knew what to do, was him putting me in his car. After that. Nothing.

For two days, I dreamt. Strange dreams. Vivid images, tastes and smells seemed to come together in horrific clarity. Martin my friend who found me took care of me. I didn’t know at the time how he helped me, I just knew that what ever it was he was doing, was working.

After a week. I was fully recovered.

I couldn’t understand what had happened. There was a nice new scar on my ribs, about a hand width down from my nipple on the left. I hadn’t gone to hospital. Why hadn’t Martin taken me to the A+E? I had known him for years. We had gone through comprehensive school and college together. We drifted apart when he went to university, but as is the way with good friends, when he returned, we started to hang out again. Gone were the days of playing football in the park, or bike rides up the BMX track. We were in our twenties, and painted the town red. That had been years ago. When I ’changed’, it had been a month after my 31st birthday.

I feel I should clarify the ‘change‘. Explain what I became. It took me a few months to come to terms with it, I almost decked Marin when he told me what he had needed to do to save my life.

I’m a vampire.

Lets just say that again.

I, am a vampire. V-A-M-P-I-R-E. Yep, that’s right. You didn’t hear me wrong.

Firstly, let me clear up the common misconceptions and answer a few questions. Yes, I drink blood, but I get it delivered in a bottle every morning, from the milk man. I don’t ‘fly’ around looking like a bat. I no longer age, I will look 31 for the rest of my life. I still like garlic. In fact, I love garlic bread. Gives me real bad wind though, so I don’t eat it that much. I wont burn, or explode if I am in sunlight, I just don’t tan. Something about being resistant to U.V. rays or something, I don’t know, so don’t ask. I have the same appetite as I did before, I still drink on occasion. I didn’t automatically become ‘cool’ and feel the need to walk about dressed in a floor length black trench coat, or suddenly talk in stilted, enigmatic sentences. I am the same as I was before. Just I wont die from old age. I need to drink about a pint of blood a day to keep healthy. Oh, I don’t have fangs either. Well, I do, but, I keep them hidden. If I ‘vamp up’ like you see in the shows on the television, then yeah, my teeth get longer, and my eyes do change colour too. I am a hit at Halloween parties now. I do see my reflection in the mirror, and I can be photographed. I can, and do by accident, get hurt. A broken arm trying to learn how to rollerblade was a reminder I am a fully grown man, not a child anymore. I haven’t been made privy to any fantastic hidden knowledge either.

I am just your average 31 year old bloke, who happens to be a vampire.

Turned out that Martin had realised that with the blood loss from me, I would be dead by the time an ambulance got to me. He had made a snap decision. He didn’t have the time to give me a chance to say no. He didn’t want to sit back and watch his friend die. I would have probably done the same thing if I were in his shoes. He had cut his palm and let his blood enter my stab wound, trying to get the wound to close as quickly as possible. He said it took an hour or so, and that it had been a real close thing. After that, for the next few days he had ‘weaned’ me a little bit at a time, cutting his palm to allow me to use his blood to heal. In doing so. I ‘changed’.

I’m cool with the idea now. It took a while. But, like a I said, not much changed really.

Martin explained that he had become a vampire by choice when he was in university. A group of his new uni’ mates had been vampires, and when he had been let into the gang as it were, he had had weeks to think it over. When he made the transition, he had been amongst friends, some of whom had been around for a very long time, and were able to answer any questions he had needed to ask. He did his best, when I asked him questions after I calmed down.

The first thing he told me to do was forget all I thought I knew about vampires. Everything that had been written or filmed before, was based on myth and legend. What he knew, from what he had been told, was that almost a tenth of the worlds population were vampires. There are vampires in every facet of society. From the lowest to highest. There are film stars and doctors, lawyers and refuse collectors. People that I have known for years, it seems, are part of my new extended family.

The rules are simple. We keep ourselves to ourselves. We help others of our kind when we can, if we can. Due to the fact that we don’t age and cant risk a population boom, people cant become vampires without the prior knowledge and acceptance of the most senior vampires who live in the area. There are a few isolated exceptions, mine being one example. Most vampires live a slightly nomadic lifestyle. Always looking the same will become slightly obvious after around 10 years, when you don’t age. The easiest thing to do is to move around a lot. Meet new faces, make new friends. The vampire community rally around, and help you settle in. My family will have to be told one day, but not for years to come yet.

The only thing that pisses me off, is the fact that when you change, you will remain the way you look. In effect, time stops for you. Yeah, you can learn new things, languages and skills, but, if you change at 14 years of age, you will always look 14 years of age, and wont get older. If you change at 65, you will remain old. You wont get younger, or regain your previous youthful vigour. Aint that a bitch?

I plan on going to the gym to get that elusive six-pack, learning a few new languages, maybe a martial art or two. Its not like I wont have the time, right?

The End

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