A story about an alternative universe where vampires co-exist with humans.
“Hi, my name is George, I am a vampire and I have not sucked human blood for forty-seven days now.”
“Well done, George! Please give George an applause, everyone!” said Steve, the group’s social worker. He stood up enthusiastically and did most of the applauding. His group was getting rather listless lately and he wasn’t sure what to do about it. Steve had started the Vampires Anonymous group in his neighborhood as the issue had really been getting out of hand. Every morning he had to step over at least two drained bodies on his way to work at the church and people were complaining about the stench. Police was very busy trying to work out which sucker had not been keeping to their quota. This was such a hard task – they didn’t leave their business cards you know -, that they couldn’t keep up dealing with the death toll. As a result, bodies kept lying around and it was just becoming a health hazard.
Steve had acquired experience in helping people with problems whilst running his Alcoholics Anonymous group and thought he’d give it a go to help the vampires. The turnout wasn’t great at first, but, a soon as he changed the meeting’s location from the church to the school, numbers were steadily rising. Steve thought his enthusiastic teachings were the magnet, although the fact that caught quota-trespassers were lawfully required to seek treatment might have had something to do with it as well.
“Please sit down again, George. Who’s next?” Steve asked the group. “You there, in the black, no, the other one, please come forward.”
A pale man stood up and took the stage. His skin was as white as marble and his features gaunt.
He sighed, “Hi, my name is Adam, I am a vampire and I have not drained a human from blood for one day.” He hung his head as he said it.
Instantly there was a shock wave going through the attendees.
“Adam,” Steve said, after checking his clipboard, “I am so disappointed to hear this. You were going so well! You nearly beat Jenny’s record last week.”
Jenny was now beaming in her chair, knowing that she was still record holder.
“I’m sorry, but you know the rules, Adam,” Steve continued. He turned around and sighed, “Okay, guys, give him your best shot.” He really didn’t like this part of the meetings.
Everybody got up, filed into the middle aisle, picked up an overripe tomato from the greengrocer’s box and, one by one, they threw it at Adam. Red juice was dripping from his eyebrow and nose, seeds sticking to his skin like pimples. It was not a pretty sight. Everybody, except for Adam, sat down again. If Steve didn’t like this part of the meeting, the vampires were as happy as cattle brought to the slaughter about it. They slumped in their seats and sought obscurity amongst their black outfits in order for them not to be picked out by Steve as the next victim.
“How did that feel, Adam? Did that feel good?” Steve asked the vampire. The man silently shook his head.
“No, it doesn’t, does it! Now, remember this feeling before you think of sinking your teeth into a throbbing, juicy neck next time.
At this, more than half of the attendees perked up.
‘Oops, wrong choice of words,’ thought Steve. “Okay, who’s next?”
Tina stood up eagerly. She was a lovely looking Goth, black lipstick and all. She was dragging a young man by his sleeve behind her. Steve rejoiced as it was the first time someone volunteered. ‘My enthusiasm is finally rubbing off,’ he smiled.
“Hi, my name is Tina, I am a vampire, I have not sucked human blood for 28 days now and I brought my nephew, Vlad.”
“Well done, Tina! Applause for Tina everybody!”
When there were only two or three vampires clapping, Steve thought it best to quickly move on. “So, Vlad, nice to have you here. Please tell us a bit more about yourself.”
Vlad looked uncomfortable at his aunt, but she prodded him to speak.
“Hi everybody, my name is Vlad and I am from Romania, where ve do not have groups like dese.”
“Oh, interesting,” said Steve. “How does your country deal with the drinking problem then?” He thought it was a very clever question and was sure the answer would show how far advanced the USA was compared to Eastern European countries.
“Ve don’t see it as a problem,” Vlad answered. He had everybody’s attention now.
“Please explain,” Adam said, fascinated.
“Ve used to be a poor country, our tourism industry suffering badly from so many tourists disappearing. But den ve changed de laws and now ve drink beggars, alcoholics and addicts only. Our lives have improved. Once ve had no more people boddering de tourists, dey started streaming in, bringing deir money wiz dem.”
“But that is discrimination!” Steve exclaimed.
“He’s got a point though,” George said.
“Two,” giggled Tina, and pointed at her fangs.
“We’ve also got so much unwanted folk in our country. We could do with a bit of a clean-up!” Adam added.
“That is preposterous!” Steve cried, getting rather red in the face now. The goal of the group treatment was to stop the vampires killing people altogether and, at the moment, that idealism was disappearing like blood from a vampire’s victim. “Tourists still disappear from your country,” he tried to throw in as a counterbalance.
“Vell, you can’t deny de tourists from your country do look plump and juicy!” Vlad laughed. All attendees laughed with him. “I mean, look at yourself, you look like you’re a nice fast-food meal, if I may say so!”
All hungry eyes turned to Steve. The vampires started to lick their lips.
“Hang on, no… guys wait, I’m not plump. It’s my jumper, it makes me look poofy!”
But the vampires were hungry, very hungry, Steve could see it in their eyes. He finally realized why they had been so listless lately. The vampires corralled Steve like they were herding their next stake steak.
“Okay, time out now, have a coffin break! Did I tell you about the planned water-skiing trip on Lake Eerie?” Steve desperately tried to avert the vampires’ attention.
However, it didn’t work. As one they fell on Steve and had him for dinner.
Afterward, Adam shook Vlad’s hand and thanked him.
Vlad smiled. “The name’s James, actually, James Jenkins, and I’m an actor from LA.” He then turned to Tina, “And you owe me a few dollars!”
Copyrighted by Jacky Dahlhaus