Eternal Life. Short Story.

As Daniel walked his stomach grumbling sullenly. The streets were cast in shadow, the streetlamps spaced too far apart to provide any real illumination. The pavement on which he walked was cracked with weeds and grass springing up where ever it could. The buildings had boards or protective bars over the windows and the sight of someone sleeping in a doorway wasn’t too uncommon. Daniel was not worried, he knew this area, he had been through many times over the years. He was safe enough. Cars cruised down the street at a steady pace, he knew where they were heading, after all it was the same place he was going. Up ahead he could hear the girls, some were calling out to the passing cars, but most just stood there in their high heels and scant clothing, huddling together as though for protection and warmth.

He paused for a second, looking over them, trying to pick the best one. He approached her quickly, “Hey”
“Hey baby, looking for some fun?”
“Yeah, do you have some place we can go?”
“Of course baby.”
She smiled and reached out, grabbing his hand, “What do you want?”
He grinned and held up a crisp fifty, “What ever this will get me.”

She started walking, leading him away from the other girls and into the network of alleys. He wasn’t worried, he knew how it worked here. The girls kept a look out for those in the alley, it gave everyone cheap and easy protection, by the time police got around to them the girl was gone and the guy was just going for a pleasant stroll. She pulled him down one of the darker paths, then she slipped the money from his hand, and leaned in to whisper in his ear. He wondered if she was new, most of the girls he had had before didn’t try to make it sexy, they just got on with it. He grinned, it made his job a little bit easier though.

Daniel bit deeply and began to swallow, the hot, salty blood flowed over his tongue. He could feel it giving him strength, power. He felt the tipping point, so close. He pulled off of her neck and bit his finger, carefully he dabbed some blood onto the wounds and they started to heal. By morning they would look like faded pimples. The woman, more of a girl really, stumbled from him and started to wander away, dazed and confused. That was the venom working its way through her system. It would wear off in a few hours. He wasn’t worried for her, one of the other girls would find her before anything untoward happened to her and he had no doubt that she would enjoy the high. He had a distinct taste of something else in her blood, heroin or meth, he wasn’t sure which, he never bothered to learn the difference. It added a low, slightly unpleasant tang, but he wasn’t in the mood for hunting tonight. Paying a prostitute just made things easier. Daniel turned and walked from the alley, it was still early in the night, but he had nothing else to do. He had fed and wouldn’t need to for a few more nights. Usually he got a week or two out of feedings, but her blood had been poor quality.

Daniel walked through the streets, trying to think of something to do. He had already beaten all the games he had bought and he was fully caught up with all his movies and TV shows. Most of his friends were off elsewhere in the world, travelling and the like. After a few minutes he decided to just head home and play some video games, there wasn’t anything for him to do after all. Most of the fun of being a vampire had faded away a few hundred years ago. Now, he just lived a normal life.

Daniel woke up to the blaring of his alarm, groaning he switched it off then got up. He glanced at himself in the mirror and then dressed, once that was done he headed downstairs for breakfast. He poured himself some cereal and ate it quickly, once he was done he dumped the bowl in the sink, grabbed his jacket and headed out the door. He winced as he stepped into the sunlight, blinking his eyes a few times to adjust. He felt weak in the sun, it drained all his powers and he became vulnerable, but he liked the heat of it and everything seemed much nicer in the daylight.

He walked to work, it wasn’t that far, only a half an hour. There he quickly swiped in and went to his office. Already there was a pile of paper work built up. He looked at it for a moment and then started to work. It wouldn’t be long before he’d have to find a new job, people were going to notice how young he looked, most of the people who started around the same time as him were starting to age. Not noticeably, but wrinkles here and there, a few gray hairs, he had none of that. He knew he could stretch out his time here, claim he had gotten a few cosmetic procedures done but that tended to make things awkward, with weird rumours popping up about the place. He much preferred keeping to himself, sure he had friendly acquaintances, but he never met them outside of work.

The day passed quickly enough with few problems. On his way home he stopped into his favourite place and got some Chinese food. He didn’t need to eat normal food, but he enjoyed the taste and it helped lengthen the time he needed between feedings. He let himself into his apartment and got out a plate. He sometimes missed the luxury, the servants, but he knew that it could draw too much unwanted attention, he liked his simple life now, it made things easier. It wasn’t hard for him to find a job, always something easy enough to do, he didn’t need one but it helped pass the days. Life lost a bit of its lustre after a few hundred years of it. Only a few of his friends had survived this long, most of the flamboyant ones were killed years ago, only those who lived in secret could survive. He knew of others, groups that banded together that lived in the shadows and were wealthy almost beyond comprehension, it made their lives easier, but he saw what it did to them. Made them insular, afraid of the world as they languished away in their self created prisons. He didn’t want that, he liked to explore and travel, to see the world. Soon he would have enough saved up for another jaunt. He needed to get most of the money legitimately, so he could explain the tickets and hotels if needed, but for a lot of it he could just use his natural charm to get by. He finished his food then shoved the plate into the dishwasher, then he flicked on the TV and settled in to watch his show.

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About Alan James Keogh

I am a 24 year old writer who somehow tricked U.C.D. into giving me not only a degree in English and Classical studies, but an Hons Masters in Creative Writing too. Visit my blog where I post short stories twice a week (Monday and Wednesday) and an installment of a serialised novel on Fridays. I did consider writing this in the third person, as though it was written by someone else, but Alan is not comfortable writing in the third person as it seems kinda creepy and unbalanced so Alan decided it was probably best to write in the first person. He hopes it went well for him.
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