“Just my mom, my dad, my brother and my…baby.” I frowned.
I loved the peace the park gave me. Just sitting under a willow tree, looking out at the ducks in the pond under the cloudy sky. My mind wasn’t wondering on worthless things like it always is. The stillness of the pond gave me sense of calmness I haven’t experienced in a while. I wish I could just go back in time and change my mistake I made so long ago. Now I’m here in the world alone, sitting alone, eating alone and sleeping alone. With no one to care but the friends that will soon fade away in time after they die, and I will still be here wondering what life would be like if I had just one other human turned into what I am now. Just so I wouldn’t be alone in the world.
I smell a sweet scent coming towards me. I closed my eyes and leaned my head back on the tree trunk as I sniffed the air and my heart started beating faster. As the aroma filled my nose I stopped and opened my eyes. I couldn’t think of hurting a human for food. But then it disappeared and I was left alone again. I just sighed and closed my eyes, resting my head on the tree trunk again. I could smell the rain from above just as it was to begin to sprinkle. A storm was on the horizon and I was waiting. I wanted to feel the cool drops on my skin. I smelled another human behind me. My fangs were coming in this time and my temptations were being tested. I shot open my eyes and could see everyone’s veins and what traveled through them. So sweet, I could hear and smell Michael’s blood from where I sat to where he stood. I could see him approach the willow I sat under as I sniffed the air aimlessly. He was so sweet, so pure I could get up and bite him now. But I had to stop myself. It was very public and I didn’t want anyone to suspect. Our coven has spent years trying to persuade humans we are just nightmares. We can’t give any reason to suspect we are real and living right under their noses. The government doesn’t even know about us immortals. We can’t let them believe that there is a chance to live forever. They’ll take it immediately once they have a chance to.
Michael’s smell was getting stronger and closer now. I could feel my mouth water and just taste his blood. Feel the warm crimson liquid running my throat smoothly. “Phoenix?” He asked as he peeked around the tree. I squeezed my eyes shut and my mouth closed. I tried to make it go away, but I couldn’t.
“Yeah?” I whispered looking away from his confused face.
“Wanna go back to my brother’s place? It’s drizzling and we don’t want to get soaked.” Michael said.
“Yeah, sure. Let’s go.” I got up and felt my fangs shrink and my eyes cool as I concentrated to keep in control.
“Okay.” He just sighed. I opened my eyes and followed him to my car and get in. “Want me to drive?” He asked caringly.
“No, I’m good. I just have a small headache, but it’ll go away.” I smiled at him. It was definitely raining and they were already kind of wet. “So, where does your brother live?” I asked turning on the car and pulling out of the parking lot.
“Well, he lives in Los Angeles, but he’s staying with my mom in Jersey. That is, if you want to go all the way to Jersey?” He smiled.
“No, it’s okay. I know my way around Jersey.” I nodded.
“Cool. Just head to Newark and I’ll give you directions from there.” I smiled more. I turned on the radio, but when I found nothing good I just hooked in my iPod and put on 45 by Shinedown. They were one of my favorite bands right now. Michael and I just listened as we headed to his mom’s house to ‘hang’ some more.
It had taken two hours to get to Michael’s mother’s house. She lived in a pretty decent house and in a pretty decent neighborhood. We had gotten off the car once we got there and made our way to the door and through it after his mom gave him a big smooch and bear hug, and Gerard, and the rest of the guys. She just stopped at me and stared, and so did their dad. “Hi.” I waved.
“Mom, this is Phoenix. One of my friends from New York.” He smiled pushing me towards his parents. I outstretched my hand for them to take. They both did warmly and introduced themselves as Donna and Donald Way. “Can we come in, mom?”
“Oh, yes. Come in.” We followed her to the living room and sat down on the couch. “Would you guys like some coffee?” Asked Donna.
“Yeah, mom. Phoenix, do you want some?” Michael asked.
“Sure, thank you.” I smiled.
“Okay then.” And she headed towards the kitchen to make us some coffee. Leaving everyone of us, including Donald.
“So, Phoenix, what do you do for a living?” He asked nicely as he got comfortable in his big turquoise Lay-Z-Boy armchair.
“I work for AP magazine. Writing articles for bands and taking pictures.” I smiled.
“That’s great. So, you know my boys then?” He asked smiling.
“Of course.” I faked a grin trying to figure out what he meant exactly.
“That’s nice. Anything else you do? Where do you live?” He asked many questions. Very curious for a father of two.
“I live in New York City where I just got promoted in the AP industry. I use to be a tattoo artist, but found that taking pictures was a bigger interest I had.” I explained. He just nodded as he listened, and so did the guys. “One day I hope to go back to tattooing and get my own shop. I kinda miss it.” I shrugged.
“That’s cool, dude. Check out my ink!” Frank huffed. He pulled up his sleeves and showed me his tattoos.
“Wow, who did this one?” I asked about the one of a man done in brown on his left shoulder.
“Kat Von D did. Amazing artist, dude.” He smiled.
“Oh, I love her. She is really good. It’s nicely done.” I ran my fingers over it. “Anyone else had anymore tattoos they want to show me?” I giggled.
“I got this one for my wife.” Michael removed his wristband and showed me a heart with flames surrounding it.
“Great! I love this one. I did it once on this man who came in and was so excited. He got it exactly the same, but he put in the band his mom’s name. She died of breast cancer so he wanted the band pink. Like, for the breast cancer association.” I frowned.
“Now, that’s what you boys should do. Get a tattoo of my name.” Donna came out with a tray filled with coffee mugs for everyone.
“I’m afraid of needles.” Gerard blurted. “You’d be lucky I even write in on my neck with Sharpie.” Gerard took a mug and sipped it.
“Now, that’s no way to talk to your mother, Gerard.” I giggled. “I’ve got a tattoo of my mom’s name.
“I’ve noticed.” He smiled.
“Well, at least I have something to remind myself.” I sighed thinking about my mom and family way back when.
“Do you have family, Phoenix?” Donna asked.
“Uh…” I stuttered.
“Mom, she really doesn’t like to talk about it.” I heard Michael whisper over to his mom.
“No, it’s okay. I don’t have a family.” I half smiled.
“I’m sorry. How old are you? You must have a boyfriend or something?” Donna asked.
“No, I just broke up with my boyfriend. I’m 27 and getting older by the minute.” I laughed.
“You’re not that old, dude. Take a look at Gerard over here. He’s 31.” Frank smiled.
“Wow, I’m not that old.” I giggled.
“So, who’s all on your neck?” Donald asked.
“Just my mom, my dad, my brother and my…baby.” I frowned.
“Baby?” Frank looked confused. I looked down and swallowed the lump growing in my throat trying so hard to make it go away, and not to cry.
“Frank?! That’s rude!” Ray cried.
“No, it’s okay. I had a baby, her name was Skylar. She was beautiful. I was 20 and married. But she was born a month early and developed a tumor in her little brain. The doctors tried everything, but she didn’t make it. She was 2 weeks old.” I let a tear slip. Everyone fell silent. “She died on my birthday actually.” I sighed and looked down at the ground again. I checked the ticking clock on the wall. It was passed ten and I needed to get home before it got too dark and I couldn’t control my urges. “I’ve got to go.” I got up and walked out the door being careful not to slam it behind me. I had to stop crying. But all these mixed emotions came back up from my heart and it ached. I was broken and no one could fix me.
“Phoenix!” I heard Michael call as I walked down the driveway. I turned around and wiped my tears. “Do you want me to come with you?” He asked.
“Um…only if you want to. I mean, you don’t need to, if you want to stay you can stay.” I smiled.
“No, I want to help you. We had a deal, remember?” He smiled.
“Yeah.” I giggled.
“Okay, let me just go tell my parents and the guys and we’ll leave.” He rubbed my arm and started jogging back to the house.
“Michael!?” I yelled. He stopped and looked back. “Tell ‘em I’m sorry, okay?” He just nodded his head and gave a thumbs up. I kind of felt bad for just walking out.
I shook it off and got in the car, starting it and waiting for Michael to come back and we could go home. I was tired and just wanted to drink my pain away with a bottle of tequila. I was sitting in silence, but after a while Michael came out and got in the car. “We can go now.” He smiled. I just nodded and started off back home.
It took us another two hours to get back home. I just parked and got out. Michael following me to my apartment and coming in right behind me. I just headed to my liquor closet and pulled out the half empty bottle of tequila. Twisting the cap off and chugging all I could choke down into my throat in one go. Michael entered and saw the scene. “What?” I growled after swallowing the hard liquor down and keeping it down.
“You need more help than I can give.” I commented.
“And you barley fucking noticed, dude. I’m fucked up more than you know. You can leave me now, ‘cause I know you will later. Might as well give up now, seeing you can’t fix me. I took another gulp of the piss I held in my hand.
“I’m not gonna leave. I promised you, remember? Just put the bottle down and we could talk.” He walked towards me, taking a hold of the bottle. I let go and he dumped it all down the drain. “Anymore?” He asked putting the bottle in the waste basket. I eyed the closet and he made his way over. “Fuck, Phoenix! You got everything!” He took out the amounts of alcohol I never knew I had. Some were full and others were half. I didn’t even remember buying half of the bottled he took out from the closet.
After dumping all of the contents of the bottles I had of booze Michael came to join me on the couch. I was sat staring at the flower on my windowsill just as he did the other day. It was dead now. Wilting under the air of my apartment. “Are you okay?” Michael asked slowly.
“No.” I whisper. “I need something.” I whispered more.
“What do you need?” He asked rubbing my back.
“I don’t know.” I shook my head. “Someone to love me, I guess.” I shrugged. Michael just nodded as he listened. “Like you and your wife. I want someone forever. I hate being alone. I want a family and kids and just happiness.” I frowned. “But that is not a possibility for me.”
“Why not?” He asked soothingly, still rubbing my back.
“Do you know what I am?” I blurted. I looked him right in the eyes. He just stared back at me.
“No.” He breathed. It took me a while to answer. Asking myself if I was ready to tell Michael what I was. Was I ready to scare him away?
“I’m broken.” I cried. “I’m fucking broken!” I looked away and tears streamed down my face.
“But I can fix you.” Michael scooted closer to me.
“No you can’t. No one can, why do you think I don’t have friends or don’t want friends? I always end up driving them away.” I looked at him again.
“I will only leave if you want me to, Phoenix. I can promise you that.” Michael kept rubbing my back. I just leaned my head on his shoulder and began to cry. We sat like that till I fell asleep. Drowning into complete dark lust.