The flash fiction challenge at TerribleMinds this week was a tricky one. A really tricky one. Mr Wendig gave us the opening line of the story and left the rest to us. The opening line provided was: “The noticed android walks past a wondering chamber.”
Really tricky. But I came up with something, and I hope you like it!
It Takes Two
“The noticed android walks past a wondering chamber.” Charles spoke slowly, being sure to enunciate each and every word.
Charles leaned closer and repeated the phrase. With the heavy beat of the music reverberating around them, it was a miracle the woman heard him at all.
She sneered and muttered, “Fuck off.” Then she turned her back on him and walked toward the bar. He watched her go, a look of confusion on his face. This was followed in quick succession by embarrassment and resignation.
I watched the exchange with some amusement. Poor Charles. It can’t be easy being a virgin at his age. I almost felt bad for setting him up.
A minute later he was approached by a tall blonde woman wearing a black dress that was barely more than a promise, and a killer smile. She stood way too close to him, breathing in his scent. It was a miracle she’d resisted him for this long. “Hey, stranger,” she said. Her voice was low and husky. I could barely hear her, even with my hearing cranked. “What’s your name?”
Poor, clueless Charles.
Blondie leaned forward and whispered something in his ear. I didn’t hear what it was, but the starry-eyed look on Charles’s face told me enough. “Sure,” he said, the word sounding slurred and distant.
Blondie slid her arm through his and led him to the bar. I adjusted the controls on my VampAmp 7 (Patent Pending) hearing augmentation and waited. Blondie had Charles right where she wanted him – pushed up against the bar, her tongue in his mouth. Charles looked awkward about the whole thing. I didn’t blame him. Now I just had to stop him turning into a corpse.
Five minutes. It took five minutes for Charles to agree to go home with her. I didn’t know if that was a mark of her prowess with the tongue hockey or of his desperation. Either way, I was happy. Maybe I’d get home in time to watch Supernatural after all.
They walked out together, his arm placed carefully around her shoulders and her hand jammed into the back pocket of his jeans. I followed.
I switched off the VampAmp 7 (Patent Pending) when we hit the street. Then I followed, waiting to see what kind of car Blondie had. I bet myself it would be a sleek, black Jag.
I was wrong. She didn’t have a car. She led him into an alley. Seriously, an alley? I sighed and followed, chalking it up as yet another reason she needed to die. A fatal lack of class.
When I caught up with them, Blondie had him pushed up against the wall. Her mouth was pressed against his, her fingers unbuckling his belt.
“Hey, Blondie,” I called. “Hands off. He’s mine.”
Blondie’s head whipped around, her eyes glowing red. “Leave us,” she said.
“Don’t think so, Vampgirl,” I said. I drew my silver blade with my right hand and my stake with my left.
She was quicker than I expected. Much quicker. So quick that she’d knocked the stake out of my hand and slammed me into the opposite wall before I could react. She leaned against me, her fangs mere inches from my throat. “You smell like food,” she hissed.
“Wait. Who’s that?” Charles. Poor, stupid Charles.
His voice broke Blondie’s concentration for a fraction of a second. I used that time to slam my knee into her groin. Her grip loosened and I pushed away, raising the silver weapon between us. Charles was watching, his eyes wide and scared, his hands desperately trying to tuck his shirt back into his trousers. “What— What’s happening?”
I didn’t answer. It was a stupid question. Blondie had fangs and glowing red eyes. I had a wooden steak and a short sword. What did he think was happening? Instead, I kept my gaze on Blondie and said, “You’re CharlieBear69. I’m BuffyGirl42. Nice to meet you.”
“Judy?” he asked. The he broke into our pre-arranged code. “The noticed android—”
“Yeah, yeah, wondering chamber, blah blah blah,” I interrupted. “Little busy right now.”
Blondie attacked. I was expecting it. I’d been fighting vampires since my Dad took me on as his apprentice when I was twelve. I knew all their tricks.
Except this one.
She leapt at me, fangs extended, claws outstretched. I raised my blade, aiming at the void where her heart should be. Then she disappeared. Vanished. I stumbled forward, the unchecked strike throwing me off balance.
That’s when she grabbed me from behind.
Her breath was cold on my neck. Her fangs were sharp.
I did not want to be killed by a vampire. But I’d rather that than be Turned by one. I saw what happened to Dad when they got to him. It took four of us to take him down.
A cloud of ash exploded behind me, covering me in the sooty, smoky smell of dead vampire. I clapped my hand to the side of my neck and spun around. Charles looked at me, eyes wide, dead vampire in his hair and a wooden stake in his hand.
“That was a vampire,” he said.
“She tried to kill you.”
“She almost… I almost…”
He looked at me, then at the stake, then back at me. “So… Are we still on for that date?”
I considered him for a minute. “Yes,” I said. “But first we collect the fangs. Ain’t no bounties paid on promises.”
He smiled uncertainly and watched me dig around on the ground until I found two sharp, white teeth. I took a silver box out of my pocket and put the fangs inside. Then I stood up and took Charles’s hand. “Ever want to be a vampire hunter, Charles? You may have a natural talent for it.”
“That would be… cool,” he said.
I smiled. “Great. There’s only one catch.”
“How do you feel about staying a virgin?”
Those of you who’ve been around for a while may remember Judy from a previous flash fiction. You can check out Touched for the Very First Time if you’d like to read Judy’s previous adventure – and find out why she was looking for a virgin.