Wednesday, January 6, 2016

WHAT WAS LEFT LOOKED LIKE CHUNKY SOUP FROM HELL... 1/6/16

They sit in the townhouse kitchen. It's late. It's quiet. Jonathon reads a magazine... SPANISH LIFE... all about resorts and property in the hot coastal regions. Traditional, tile roofed, stucco villas... five bedrooms, five and a half luxury tiled baths, chef's kitchen, built-in wine cooler, stainless steel appliance package, two car garage plus parking for three. Bit of a Mediterranean view from private balcony off master. Close to bars, coffee shops and spending opportunities of all kinds. Marina space available.

Sarah (vampire Jonathon's consort) peeks over his shoulder and says - What do you think?...... He goes - I don't know. I'm guessing I'll have to go up into the hills to get something like I want. You know how it is in Malibu, all crowded on the beach but spread out and roomy when you move back a bit? (scans the glossy pages) God, it's so different. They want four and a half million dollars for these places....

Edith pours tea and says - What did you think? Did you think it would be the same? And where would you walk? There's nowhere to walk around up in the hills.  Nowhere but the hills. You like to people watch. Who you gonna watch, rabbits and grouse? I say 'no.'

Sarah adds - Look, you don't have to go right away. Think about it. If you really have to do this, I'll go. You know that.

Do you want to go? - he says..... She doesn't answer.

Edith blurts out - He wants the old days. He wants it to be the way it was. We can get a hypnotist. He must have a 'familiar' who's a hypnotist, or knows a hypnotist. They can regress him. They can take him back to old Al-Andalus all he wants. It's hard to hypnotize vampires. I know that, but we can get a really good hypnotist. Doctor Franklin must know some.

Sarah moves her bar-seat closer to his and hugs him. They're sitting at the granite breakfast bar. Edith whispers - And who would you kill there?..... People, I'd kill people. Why? That wouldn't be a problem - says Jonathon. I only 'cull' twelve a year. I'd have visions. I'd know who to kill. That wouldn't change.... She shrugs.

Does Baylah ever want to go back to Timbuctu? - asks Sarah...... She's only about three hundred years old. Not even that. - says Jonathon. And 'Papa' has his out of body experiences, or whatever it is when he misses his past.

You went back once. I was with you. What was that? - asks Sarah...... I don't know - he says. God, do you know how long it's been since I've read my copy of La Ciencia Vamperismo? I don't even know where it is. I lost track of it.

Yeah, well, I didn't - says Edith. I got it out in The Pines. I got it put away. It's safe. It's OK. I wouldn't let nothing happen. You know that.

I don't know anything anymore. I just want to rest. I just want to sleep - he says.... Sarah helps him and they go up to their chamber. Edith puts the cups in the dishwasher and closes up.... Except for the ticking of the clocks, the townhouse sleeps....

The little ghost boy, who spends most of his time in the rooms down in the basement, comes up to sit in the dark, library and peek out through the draperies. He likes to watch the street. Occasionally, a rare late night pedestrian sees a small, gray face, but this is Old Philadelphia. People see a lot of things.

Jonathon and Sarah get undressed and burrow under the covers. Everything is snug and tight, just the way vampires like it. She clicks on the small flat screen they have mounted on the wall at the foot end of this humidor-walk-in-closet for people... well, exotic people... and watches some station binge blasting The Twilight Zone. Jonathon just lays there..... She says - Jonathon, if we go to Spain, how am I going to watch television?..... But he was already sleeping.

And then he dreamed. Maybe it was something he saw, or experienced once. Vampires experience a lot of things....

There was a rectangular shaft, lined with square, white, porcelain tiles. And it was just large enough to accommodate two bull hippos with perhaps a cubit and a half of empty space around their unyielding, boulder-like bodies. One faced east. The other faced west.... water up to their flanks.....

A skinny, shrieking, babbling man desperately hangs onto iron spikes running in a line from the lip of the shaft, maybe twelve cubits above his highest hand-hold to seven cubits below his twisted, puny, inadequate for gripping toes. Four pike-men wielding elephant spears jab at his head, his ass, his thighs, his groin... wherever they could... forcing him ever downward toward the 'dead-bath.' Drunken, overfed courtiers, each with perhaps two, sticky, clinging, low grade concubines borrowed from the 'cheap' harem with the slightly tattered, stained cushions, yell, gesticulate and for some odd reason make kissy faces and go 'awww,' as the doomed, bare man inches lower and lower.

Then it happens. The pike-man with the big thing growing out of his left nipple hits a tender spot. The doomed, bare man screams, lets go and SMACKS down, stomach side south, right on the wide, expansive, oozing back (did you know they can sweat 'blood?') of the west facing behemoth.... For a few heartbeats he just lays there, like a mouse in a glue trap, tasting what comes out of those pores.... The audience up above gasps. A few of the concubines go 'tee hee hee.'... The pike-men pull back on their weapons.... Bubbles stream out from the lemon sized nostrils of the offended 'river horse.' Then it SLAMS the left side of its body against the tiles. The accidental passenger screams some more, but the beast is so big. What can he grab onto? Then it slams into its neighbor, who slams back. Soon they're at it, rearing and 'mouthing' at each other's giant, hippo butts. Hides rip. Blood flows. Water churns, as the skinny, naked man slides down between the two berserk killers.

Those up above begin to cheer, greasy and hot in the orange torchlight. Someone heaves a squealing concubine over the edge. Two others follow. By the time it was over, they all went in. Look, the 'prince' was gonna redecorate anyway. Shame to waste all those bracelets and anklets. Lucky they were just the cheap stuff... the girls too....

Last Image - What looked like two huge raw livers floating in a gruesome vat of Campbell's Chunky Soup from hell.....

Then the dream was gone.....

And Jonathon wasn't sleeping...

<more next time>

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