Well, I have finished my vampire story. I’m going to post it here. I have no idea if it’s any good or not. It was the best I could do. I went way over the word count, but I couldn’t wrap it up with any fewer words. Let me know what you think. You can read the preceding parts here.
As he began to open the door, inches away from salvation, Jim took one final look at Stinky. The creatures were nearly on top of the bartender. He had little hope for survival.
Jim considered life if he walked out the door. He would survive, but would he be alive? Work on Monday. Cup of Ramen for lunch. Meetings. Boss droning on about
nothing. Take away Stinky’s bar and he might as well be dead.
Slamming the door shut, Jim screamed “Who wants some?” in his best Bruce Campbell impression minus the chainsaw for a hand.
Gaining the attention of the foul beasts, Jim recalled the old woman’s words: “mind your neck”. Jim removed his shirt and wrapped it around his neck, taking care to cover every inch of exposed skin. He had watched a few vampire movies in his life, and as far as he could remember had never seen one bite through a victim’s clothes. He flung himself over the bar and took a place beside his friend.
Seconds later, Jim found himself surrounded, a mass of pale bodies clutching and scratching at his skin, welts and cuts forming on his chest. He swung his fist wildly in all directions, knocking some down, and others rose in their place. Stinky was still wildly swinging the baseball bat, several times coming mere inches from striking Jim. Jim hoped it wasn’t intentional.
About to succumb to the flood, Jim caught one of the creatures in the face with a left cross. For a moment, the man lay on the floor, but soon the color started to return to his face. With a “thanks, mate” the man stood, wiped the blood off his mouth, and joined the fray, knocking several of the creatures off Jim. Jim smiled, the bulb lit. Aim for the face and hope for the best. It worked.
Had he not been a curious child, willing to put his hand in a blender just to see what would happen, Jim would never have survived, never discovered the cure to what plagued the poor souls, and would never have saved the only place in his adult life that truly felt like home.
When the fighting ceased, the bar filled with blood, teeth, and the newest target demographic for denture adhesive companies, Jim turned to Stinky and said, “I’m going home.”
“I told you that hours ago,” said Stinky, laughing as he shook Jim’s hand.
“Wasn’t tired then,” said Jim, finding a blood-stained hundred dollar bill in his hand. He wanted to refuse the money, but knew it would be just enough to get him to his next paycheck, if he cut the right corners. Jim placed it in his right front pocket, nodded to his benefactor, and stumbled out the door.
On his long walk home, Jim stopped at the alley a block from his apartment, hoping to thank the old woman for her warning. She wasn’t there, nor was her burning barrel. Jim wondered if she ever had been there.
Jim opened the door to his apartment, wanting nothing more than to collapse on the couch for a few days. He was cut all over, but figured a few hours sleep would do him as much good as the alcohol swab bath he would give himself in the morning. As he took the first step into the doorway, Jim praised his paranoia, for without the light he refused to turn off, he would never have seen the smiling reflection of the creature in the glass of the old, brass clock on his wall.