Adrianna walked into the kitchen, where Viktoria was cooking dinner.
“Hey baby. How was school?”
“Same as every day. A modern version of slave driving mixed with utter boredom.”
“If you think that about high school, you will hate university – and work!”
“Thanks, way to lift my spirits.”
“Hey Mrs. A!” a male voice greeted. Viktoria turned around, and dropped the ladle in her hand.
For a moment she saw Blaine, standing right in front of her. Then she realized it was his son.
“Oops, how clumsy, she said as she bent to pick up the dropped tool, at the same time Blaine Jr. did the same. He was faster and both crouched down on the kitchen floor halted, as he handed her the ladle. For a few seconds she stared into Blaine’s eyes. Blaine Junior, but what she saw were his father’s eyes. The exact same shade of light green, such a contrast to the dark, nearly black hair.
Both stood up again, as Viktoria tried to make light of the situation.
“So, will you be joining us for dinner, Blaine? If you are, I make it special and will even rinse off the ladle before reusing.”
He laughed “I could not refuse!” There. The same crooked smirk as his father. What the heck is wrong with you?, she reprimanded herself.
It was not unusual that the kids had friends over for dinner, so nobody ever batted an eye on it. But 4 weeks later, the absence of one particular frequent visitor was noted.
“Addy, how come we have not seen Blaine around here in a while?” Ezio asked in between bites.
“Oh, I don’t know … he’s busy, I guess.” Adrianna avoided looking at her dad.
“They broke up!” Marco added, earning a side look from his sister.
“WHAT!?” Viktoria exclaimed. She liked Blaine around. It was not the exact Blaine she wanted to talk to, but there was so much of his father in his appearance, behavior, even a little bit the voice.
“I was going to tell you … eventually. Mind if I get up. I am full and have a boatload of learning to do for those finals?”
She was excused and left for her room, her brother went to some sporting event.
“Are you ok, my love?” Ezio asked as he helped her clear the table.
“Fine. I just thought our kids trusted us and told us everything …”
“They do, but they are becoming adults now and will lead their own lives, without telling mommy and daddy every detail anymore, and frankly, I am not sure I would want to hear it all.” Ezio smiled.
Viktoria leaned up against him as he folded his arm around her.
“Those two have been friends since they were toddlers, and dated for years now … I just hope they do not rush the break up…” Viktoria felt icy spikes driven into her heart when she realized this was almost her and Blaine Sr’s story all over again. And she disliked the fact that she did not even see the copy of ‘her’ Blaine around anymore. As long as there was Blaine Jr., his father’s death had not seem so … final. Now even that would be taken from her?
“Hey Blaine, how are you? Well, I do not know why I keep asking you this. Not like you would actually reply and IF you did, I would be running. Ha ha ha … Look at us, still immature….” Viktoria knelt at Blaine Cameron’s grave. At first she had felt awkward talking to him out loud, she had only thought the things she wanted to say. Then one day she passed an old lady talking to a grave as if it were another person. Viktoria could not help but stare. The old woman smiled at her, they spoke, and Viktoria mentioned her bravery.
“It’s not bravery, child. That is my husband. He and I were married at 15. I was 85 when he passed. I have always talked to him, about everything, I do not see why I should stop now. And people, oh child, people will always think what they want to think. The only thing worth worrying about is what is in here.” She laid her hands on her heart.
Ever since that day, Viktoria just did not care and spoke to him the same way she always had. The only thing missing now were his responses, she even missed those annoying innuendos.
“Oh Blaine, why? I just do not understand why you? There were so many people so much more deserving to have their time cut short. I just do not know if I can do all of this without you. I never realized HOW much time we actually spend together. With the exception of that time when the thing with your father happened … and you disappeared for 5 years. Damn, that was hard too. Somehow I still hope that it was all a dream, or a mistake and I walk into some festival and there you’ll be, playing that guitar. Man, what would I give just to …”
Viktoria felt watched and looked over her shoulder, where she saw a stranger. She shot up to standing and realized she knew him.
“Sorry, I did not mean to startle you …” he said.
“This is pretty impolite, listening in on other’s conversations …”
“Not to be rude, but does a conversation not imply at least two active participants?”
Viktoria began to cry and turned away.
“Again, sorry, Viktoria. My social skills may be a bit … rusty… I did not mean to …”
“What do you want?”
“I walked by and saw you …”
“You take walks on a cemetery? Isn’t that a bit odd, even for a … vampire?”
“It would be. And I didn’t. You realize the street is right there, and over there is my house. I was just on my way home when I saw you and thought I’d tell you hello.”
“Caleb, never tell people who are mourning loved ones on a cemetery ‘hello’.”
“So it is true. Your Romeo is truly gone.”
“He is not my ‘Romeo’ but my best friend. Well, was…” a sting in her heart.
“Again, what do you want? I am still not interested in becoming one of you. So what?”
“I do not know why you are so hostile. I thought we were friends. I understand, and I haven’t pushed the issue anymore, now have I?”
“We haven’t talked to each other in over 10 years! That is usually not a sign that we’d be BFFs.”
“You know, when you are ‘one of us’ as you put it, time is really of not much consequence anymore…”
“Must be nice …”
“Has its ups and downs. But … may I ask what happened? With him I mean?”
“Cancer. And kidney failure. Or a combination. Officially his heart gave out.”
“Hmm … why did you not come to me? I could have helped.”
“You can cure cancer?!”
“No, of course not. But I can cure … death. Well, the final part of it, at least.”
“I could have made him one of us. Then he would still be able to try and sleep with the female population of the entire world, just as before. And he would not have to worry about food, diseases, pain …”
“You do not feel pain?”
“How would I? Technically, we are dead. My heart does not beat.” He smiled. Caleb rarely did. The tips of his fangs became visible. Which was probably why. Viktoria felt a chill down her spine.
“Umm … so … can you still turn him … now?”
Caleb laughed “No, not anymore. You do still need to be alive for various reasons. What you need now is some Dr. Frankenstein … hahahahaha”
“I hardly think a cemetery is the right place to laugh, Caleb.”
“Would you like to talk more at my home? You could meet my family …”
“No, thank you. I need to get going. It was … nice … seeing you, Caleb.”
He bowed down slightly “The pleasure was all mine.”
Walking home Viktoria caught herself looking over her shoulder a few times. Vampires gave her the creeps. Viktoria had met Caleb at one of Penny’s parties when she first had moved to the city. He and Penny were dating .. or at least they were sleeping together. Once introduced, Caleb took to Viktoria, and he was generally a nice guy, very polite, friendly, not bad looking, as long as he kept his mouth shut. When he laughed, all Viktoria had ever been able to think about were those fangs. But Caleb’s words … had she only thought of that. At the end of the day, a vampire Blaine would have still been better than no Blaine at all …