Beauty and the Vampire

I didn’t sleep well last night, but the sleep I did get was riddled with annoyance, anger, and a vampire that I still loath.

My dream starts off in a very different world from ours, though there were many parallels to this reality. I was myself– though in this reality I was single and still lived at home with my parents– everything else about me (being a college grad, my interests, etc…) was the same.

My family was hosting some sort of party or fundraiser in our large, clean basement (this in itself is a vastly different reality, hah.). Many families were present, along with some of their teens and younger children. Some of the people my age were playing pool, the parents drank at the bar, and the little kids were being entertained by a magician…who also happened to be a vampire.

In my dream, I automatically knew that vampires co-existed with humans. They had not drank human blood for centuries and mostly stayed in their own communities, and in return, humans would not interfere with vampire community rules and regulations. Again, this was just something I knew, but it was never verbally established.

The kids were in awe by this magician as he turned feathers into doves and a rabbit’s foot charm into a live rabbit. This vampire was closer to an Anne Rice vampire than a Twilight one, (thank god!) he was tall, slim, and had very slick, attractive features that were topped with straight black hair. Though he was probably hundreds of years old, his features were that of a 35 year old; in his prime, but would never be mistaken as someone young and naive. To me, he looked more like a caricature of a vampire than a “real” one — he even had a cape. (To his credit, he was playing the part of a magician, so…)

I observed all this from by the laundry room, because there was a fiasco happening with our washer, and it was flooding the laundry room floor with water. I had managed to stop the flood and had been discreetly cleaning it all up, while my parents kept the partiers out of my way and entertained. I went to the bar told my dad that everything was under control. He thanked me and told me to have a drink and enjoy some of the homemade Blood Chocolate that the magician brought in. Again, I automatically knew that these were a vampire delicacy that was often shared with humans. They were melted dark chocolate and minute amounts of animal blood. May humans did not eat them when offered, but others were more liberal with the idea and claimed them to be pretty good.

At this point, I had not ever had Blood Chocolate, as it wasn’t something you could just pick up at a grocery store. I took one off the small plate and rolled my eyes — they were bat shaped. That this point, the magic show had ended, and the children were starting to run past us wildly past me in boisterous laughter. Just as I was about to take a bite of the chocolate, I noticed that the vampire was staring intently at me. Creeped out, I made a face and placed the chocolate onto a napkin, choosing to help myself to a drink first.

I casually asked my dad where he found the vampire magician. To which he answered that he was recommended by a co-worker. I relaxed a little when I noticed that the vampire was not longer staring at me, but was politely answering the questions of curious children who wanted to know more about vampires. I even cracked a smile; maybe his creepy staring had been a social misread on my part.  With a shrug, I took a sip of my drink and sampled the piece of chocolate.

It was pretty tasty, not the best I’ve ever had, but It was far better than most store-bought chocolates. It had a slightly gooey center, which I knew was blood, but it was mixed with plenty of sugar and was slightly metallic but not off-putting.

“Do you like it?” a voice whispered in my ear. I nearly jumped out of my skin. The vampire was now by my side and that strong level of creepy returned. Part of me wanted to punch him in the face, but I resisted the urge. I chose to be polite.

“Well, yes…” I answered stiffly. “But I like all chocolate anyways.”

“I’m glad. It’s a family recipe.”

I walked away at that point and spent the rest of the party spending as much time away from him as I could. Once nearly everyone had left, I returned to the bar for another gin and tonic. The creepy vampire returned, and I was actively ignoring him as he attempted conversation. He said his name at some point, but I instantly forgot it, because I did not care. I would inch away from his and his fanged smile, but he would always close the gap. With everyone gone, my dad now noticed my visible disinterest and approaches the man.

“I think you should leave my daughter alone,” my dad warned. “She does not want to talk to you.”

“About that…” the stranger said with a sigh. “I have decided to take your daughter as my wife.”

Both my dad and I froze as knowledge of vampire regulations passed through my mind. I knew that on exceedingly rare occurrences, a vampire would select a human as their partner and start a family with them to keep their bloodline strong. There were only a handful of humans every century that were swept away in this manner. Again, there was an agreement that vampires were allowed to do this (as it happened so infrequently) in exchange for peace between the two (species, races?) As long as the human was not legally married, there was no fighting against it.

We were stunned and  wanted to resist, but my family had their hands tied. I wanted to protest, but laws would not allow it, though I made sure my expression of utter disgust never left my face. I was told I would be able to return to visit my family in the future, but that I was to leave with him that night. I was also told that I only needed to bring a few things, as clothing and other necessities would be provided to me. So, with my  little orange backpack (which I really own) filled with my most cherished possessions, I hugged my family goodbye out in our driveway.

I looked for a car, but there was none. The vampire gripped my arm tightly and I instinctively tried to break loose, but he forced me closer to him.

We were suddenly propelled into the air at an alarming speed. I cried out in fear and surprise, my fear of falling filled me with a shaking dread. I closed my eyes, but could still feel the rush of wind as we flew. We were in the air for a long time before I finally opened my eyes. The sun was setting over the the vast open hills fields we were now passing over. (Apparently, vampires in this reality can fly and are not harmed by the sun.) I even saw a scenic cliffside that I wished I could stop and admire it.

We arrived at his home just as the sun set. It was a large, gothic-style mansion. I rolled my eyes again. It was too cliche for me. There were smaller, more modern looking homes in this vampire village…but of course, I had to be taken by one who had a flair for the dramatics.

Next thing I know, I’m in a nice bedroom. My personal bedroom until I was to be turned into a vampire and be wed. The vampire asked me if I needed anything (thankfully, he was no longer wearing that stupid cape.) My eyes shifted around the room as the sinking reality of my new life hit me. I snorted.

“Are you going for some sort of Beauty and the Beast motif?” noticing the striking parallels between my situation and my favorite fairytale. However, I was less than impressed with all of this and decided that I might come to hate that story.

He chuckled and waved his hand at the tea set near the window. The teapot and closest cup turned into live representations of Mrs. Potts and Chip. My internal anger turned into primal rage, and I shoved the pair out of the open window and watched as they returned to regular china before shattering on the porch below. This vampire was an illusionist — making people see things differently from what they really were — which was why he was the perfect magician. I had my life completely ripped away from me and he was cracking jokes.

Still full of blinding anger, I began chucking all the breakable things I could get ahold of out the window. If he could destroy my life, I could destroy his possessions. At some point, the vampire grabbed me to stop me from nearly hurling myself out the window, and in a twist of irony, I bit his arm hard enough to draw blood. He let go of me with a hiss of pain. I spat the blood out of my mouth in disgust and screamed at him to leave me alone.

Now, it was months later. I was sitting at the dinner table with Creep, (I refused to call him by any real name) Bitch, (His annoying sister who enjoyed micromanaging everyone) Teen, (her son who looked to be about sixteen, though he was probably far older) and Grandpa (the head of the house who looked only slightly older than Creep.) By this point, I was resigned to my fate, as I knew running away would be impossible, and I understood that my needs were not more important than the peace between humans and vampires. However, this did not mean I would be amiable. I sought out to be the coldest, rudest, and brattiest person I could be. My only hope of escape was to be horrible enough to be kicked out before I had to marry Creep.

The family drank sheep’s blood from wine glasses while I picked at the mutton on my plate. I hated being grumpy all the time as it ruined my appetite, but I was also very stubborn. Luckily, it was mostly easy for me to hate the family; Teen was angsty and played too loud of music, Bitch always tried to control what I did and how I did it, and Creep had brought this horrible fate upon me. The only one I couldn’t hate was Grandpa. He claimed to be the Dracula from the books. I called him Nosferatu, but instead of being offended, he found it funny. He also told hilarious jokes.

I pushed the mutton around on my plate, silently waiting for something devious to happen. I had let sheep on the property loose and propped the back door open and dropped feed on the floor just before dinner. Right on cue, a saw a sheep prance down the hall. Teen shouted out and I hid my snort behind my glass of water. However, it was dead obvious that I was the culprit. Creep swore and seized my arm.

I know exactly what you’re trying to do, and it won’t work,” he growled at me. Before then, I had never seen him that angry and I had become stunned into frozenness. “I think it’s time to…” he muttered a few more choice words. Then he pulled me down the hall like a disobedient child. Grandpa called out after his son, trying to convince him to bring me back to the table with little success.

Apparently, Creep knew I was trying to force him into changing his mind and avoid becoming a vampire. His idea of stopping my protests was to turn me into one as soon as possible. I don’t remember the bite on the neck, or having my blood drained, but I did remember the excruciating pain of dying. Interview with a Vampire describes the horrors of becoming one of these creatures and my subconsciousness took that terrible approach. I have never experienced dying before, but my dream was a convincing experience; I could feel my organs stopping as it got more and more difficult to breathe. My body was dying, but I tried to fight it. Creep held me in his arms as I died, apologizing profusely over my pain and suffering. I didn’t want to be immortal, I didn’t want to live here of all eternity. I weakly pushed him away from me.

“If I am forced to spend the rest of eternity with you… at least let me die alone…” I spat weakly. He did as I wished and let me go, but he looked utterly distraught, his eyes filled with tears. I couldn’t help but feel a little smug; I had finally caused him true pain.

The final snippet of my dream was me observing myself in the mirror, tracing the bite marks on my neck with my finger tips. (Apparently, vampires also have reflections.) I was white-pale, my features appeared porcelain and felt just as cold. I looked like a curly-haired china doll. With the exception of my bright eyes, I appeared just as dead as I felt on the inside. I hated my life and I hated myself. I examined my sharp canines with a soft sigh and wondered what to do next. I now was truly a prisoner of this life.
Dream Score: 6/10. I horrible, tragic story that takes all the romance out of a vampire story. I have never really liked vampires (and I hated the stupid Twilight craze) so I found it weird that I had a dream about them. This only gets this good of a score, because it plays out like snippets of an actual in-depth story.

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