Vampires love the winter. They love the dark and the cold. Sarah, Jonathon's understanding consort, walks the streets for hours all bundled up in her black puffy coat and thick (also black) wool hat. She stops and gives homeless people gift cards to fast food places. Sure the food's not the healthiest, but other places chase them. In a fast food joint they can, at least, duck into the toilet for a fast fix up and eat their meal in peace. There's always a corner somewhere... maybe a discarded newspaper or magazine. The heat feels good. They can decompress a little. And you know she loads the cards up to about two hundred and fifty dollars. Figures that'll last them between ten days and two weeks. Sometimes she gives out six packs of tightie-whities and t-shirts too... sometimes six packs of white gym socks. It makes a difference. She used to give out jeans and sweat shirts too and enough money so they could slip into a Laundromat and wash their stuff every once in a while. But few had the will power for that. They'd buy alcohol.
Carries a big plastic shopping bag from Target. She doesn't do this every night, but often enough. Look, she knows a few of them sell the gift cards for maybe a few bucks (how much can another homeless guy have?). But at least second guy keeps it and WANTS the food.
One guy, Jim had cancer. Lost a whole lot of weight. Looked like that deep gravelly voiced singer who sings about life on the street. Told her his name was 'Bob.' Sarah got friendly with Bob. Gave him money. Gave him a lot of stuff. Arranged for a room in a clean but plain hotel twice a week, so he could get cleaned up and sleep and all. She would have arranged for the place full time. Bob didn't want that..... Tom Waite! That's the name. The singer is Tom Waite. They'd talk over coffee or tea. Sit there for hours. The waitresses never said anything. Who else was gonna come in that late... even in the city.
Sarah never said she was a vampire, but he knew. He never said anything, never had to. Neither did she. One night she passed him a vial of her blood. She said - Here, drink this... What's it gonna do? - he asked... Sarah said - Just drink it. You want to be well, don't you?... Bob just looked at her. She nodded... He took it. He drank it.... A few nights later he was all better. Then he disappeared. Not right in front of her or anything. It wasn't like that. He just stopped showing up at that hotel. No one saw him on the street. He just left. She kept thinking about him though. If she was a vampire before Jonathon, if he didn't bring her over, she might have started something with Bob... Maybe he could have been her consort? Sarah never found out why he was on the streets... His crowd (homeless types often have a small group, maybe three or four) never knew. That's how it was.
Winter nights were like that. People talked more. Maybe the dark made them seek each other out?
So she wandered the streets and did her thing.... 'culled' the wicked... saved the worthy. Never made a big thing out of it. Most never knew she was there. Just sublimated into some high rise bedroom and did it. Jonathon liked his little confrontations. He liked his passion plays. Not Sarah. She liked the cold. She liked the snow. She liked the dark. Look, they all like winter... the vampires, I mean. But she had a deep appreciation for it... a reverence. Odd, considering Jonathon was the spiritual one. Even for a vampire he was spiritual. No two were alike.... 'alone in the dark' they called it.
Before she went back to the townhouse, Sarah went into a CVS store and bought a couple magazines... all kinds... Jonathon liked magazines... He bought them too. But most nights he stayed out till the last minute and had to rush back before the dawn, so he never had time.... Sarah was responsible. She had time.
I guess she's the Wendy to his Peter Pan.
Look, no one ever bothers vampires when they roam the city late at night. It's like a 'thing' they have, an aura.
But if you have a couple friends, go out some time, in the wee hours before dawn. Be quiet. Be discreet. Look around...
It's a whole other world and most people never even realize it's there.
<more next time>
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