I knew she was a vampire the moment I laid eyes on her. This tall, raven-haired beauty fooled most people, but not me. I wasn’t sure if she knew I knew. I said nothing. As an investigative reporter, I had run across a vicious killer vampire some years earlier. He had no conscience. His need for blood was the only thing that mattered to him – nothing else. Fortunately, his bloodlust was his Achilles heel and finally brought about his dramatic demise.
After many fruitless months, the vampire hunters finally cornered him, paralyzing him with silver bullets filled with garlic. But they had to work quickly, the effect would not last. Wrapping him in silver chains he was fastened to a prepared stake and set on fire; it was horrible to watch. The first half hour he writhed, screaming obscenities at the crowd who cheered his demise. I carefully surveyed those that watched to make sure they were sincere in their praise of his death. The rays of the rising Sun finally struck terror into the creature. More silver bullets and additional fuel finally put an end to this demon of darkness.
His ashes, however, were still dangerous and could infect. Carloads of garlic were thrown into a grinder and spread twenty feet all around the stake. A sprinkling system was installed which sprayed holy water on the grounds for a month. Pig dung was turned into the soil as fertilizer for the garlic planted throughout the area. A fence was erect with warning signs on all sides.
In spite of all the precautions, I wondered if any of his victims had survived and had been turned. Had he taken a bride? Was she still with us?
And then I met Lillie Lester. Was she perhaps a bride of the monster, abandoned by his death, on the prowl for blood or a mate? I wasn’t sure. In spite of my misgivings, we became friends. Her intelligence and sense of humor impressed me. No, it arrested me. But I remained on guard especially when her pallor changed; a telltale sign that she was about to feed. I knew only too well that my jugular vein was in jeopardy at those moments; I avoided her. But after she had fed, she was more voluptuous and titillating than ever. I was surprised when I noticed that sunlight did not have a negative effect on her. Of course, she avoided the Sun to the same extent that all beautiful women with fair skin avoid overexposure to its unkind rays.
It was her marvelous sense of humor that could have very well been my undoing. She had me in laughter a good deal of the time. I loved her perfect imitation of Tallulah Bankhead which she would slip into when least expected. As she left my home one afternoon, she stopped in the doorway, turned and seductively whispered, “Dahling. I’ll come back and make love to you at 5 o’clock. If I’m late, start without me.” Then she turned and majestically disappeared down the walkway while I was consumed with laughter. She didn’t return that day at 5, but we did make love once. There are no words to describe the ecstasy I experienced with her. In hindsight, I’m certain if she had sunk her teeth into my jugular, I would have joyfully let her.
I once quoted Tallulah in a question to Lillie, “Tallulah once said, it’s the good girls who keep diaries; the bad girls never have the time. Is that true?” She threw her head back in laughter, but she never answered my question.
I became painfully aware that her charms were eroding my guard. I denied I was falling in love with her; I was afraid. My fear was assuaged the day I cut my finger while preparing lunch. When she saw the blood, her eyes flashed hideously as she passed out on the kitchen floor. When she came to, the expression on her beautiful face told me she knew that I knew her secret. She apologized for fainting and excused herself from lunch. As she departed she chuckled in her husky Tallulah voice, “Nobody can be exactly like me. Even I have trouble doing it.” I never saw her again.
I often wondered if she vanished because she cared enough for me to protect me from her curse; I missed her terribly. It was a long time before the cloud of my melancholy disbursed and I was able to move on with my life. However, the lingering question remained, was she happy? She certainly made me happy in the time we had together.
Rumors surfaced of a vampire in a distant city. If the reports were true, I was fearful it might be Lillie. As I checked my supply of silver bullets and my stash of garlic, I loathed the thought of having to shot bullets into this beautiful creature. But, I was still a reporter and had a job to do but, would I weaken if it was her? I prayed my Lillie was safe somewhere else; always hopeful she may return to me someday.