UNWRITER Ron Berry

October 13, 2008

Clyde

Filed under: writing — unwriter1 @ 4:43 pm
Tags: , , , ,

The Frustrated Vampire

For a Saturday night, things were dead. There wasn’t a neck to be found anywhere. This town was just not what it used to be. It was time to pack it in for the night. Clyde decided to head down to the Bat’s Wing, the local hangout for vampires. Trying to drown his misfortune over a few bloody Mary’s, he noticed his old friend George sitting in the corner. He ambled over and fell into a chair at the same table. Turned out his old hunting buddy was not faring much better.

“Ya know George, this place just ain’t what it used ta be. I haven’t had a decent bite in weeks. Picked up a hitchhiker the other day, but he had more beer than blood. I heard about this new place that is supposed be really thriving, so I think I’ll just pack it in.” “Ya, and how are ya supposed to get to this new place”? “That won’t be much of a problem, got a buddy in town, he’s not one of us, and I know he’ll stake me” “Well, good luck Clyde. By the way, where is this gold mine? Just in case I get a chance to join you.” “Chicago, in the states”

Chicago in the mid 1800’s wasn’t quite the metropolis it is today, but fresh blood was constantly moving in. The instructions on the box containing Clyde coffin instructed the baggage handlers to put it off to the side away from everything else. Clyde’s buddy, a college professor from Transylvania state college had arranged for a visit with the newly opened Chicago University. Arriving a week prior to Clyde, he was able to tour the surrounding countryside to locate the ideal new home for his friend. Shortly after his arrival, a buckboard showed up and Clyde was loaded aboard. To protect himself the professor unloaded the box outside the cave and proceeded to remove the outer crate. Since it was bright daylight, Clyde did not dare open the lid, but when the sun went down, he could move his bed into the deep recesses of the cave.

“Ah, yes, this will make a nice little retreat. But I’m famished, wonder what kind of delicacies this new land has to offer.” It was a short trek to Market Street. The sights were scary and the sounds even worse. But the air had an unreal aroma to it. Stumbling over a few winos, Clyde made his way to the source of the unique scent. The garb of the first erect person he saw was exotic. “Now this should be good”, he thought to himself. “I don’t smell any of that beer that damn near did me in back home”. But, just as he was getting ready to make his move, his prey turned around. Ugly!!!! It was enough to stop a truck, had they been invented. Oh well, he wasn’t after looks, just a quick nip to the neck. She raised her hands, and suddenly Clyde couldn’t move! “What the…” he thought. “You, vampire, I got something better here”. My blood is too thin for you, but take this back and drink hearty”. As she lowered her arms, Clyde found himself able to move and had somehow acquired a vial of something. “I am the Great Mystic from Bombay. I cure all ills. (Hey, it’s my story, if I want an Indian mystic, I can. you put what you want in your story). Clyde was more than a little ill at ease with this dame, but it was almost daylight and time to make tracks.

Ok, first night in a new home and what has he found so far? A sidewalk full of drunks and a dame that could stop clocks. Oh, a bottle of something to fix him up. With nothing to lose, he popped the cork and threw the mixture down. Then it threw him down. Clyde was out like the proverbial light. Good thing he was sitting on his ‘bed’ when he took that Molotov cocktail. Clyde woke up, shook his head to clear the cobwebs and smelled the vial. “Looks red like blood and smells like cranberries. What did she put in that stuff? And what is that infernal noise?” It was dark so it should be safe to head back to town to find the real stuff. No more Bombay Blasters. He stepped outside his cave.

Whoosh! Zoom!!! Clyde saw the noisy parade of lights and covering his ears to shut out some of the noise, headed towards what he assumed to be a noisy crowd of townspeople carrying funny torches. Zoom!! “What the hell was that?” As the semi missed him by inches he turned around and headed back home. Badly shaken, but unhurt he laid down to settle his nerves. “I’ll wait until tomorrow night. Maybe the crowd won’t be so angry”. He needed time to think anyway. The first question he had was, what were those things?

He couldn’t sleep and couldn’t go anywhere. It was almost daylight. He decided to straighten his place up and have it ready for his first conquest. This new country was sure strange he thought. “Well, maybe tonight will be better anyway. It is hard to find anyone alone during carnival time. Glad I brought my readin’ material”. With nothing but time on his hands, Clyde decided to work on his English. “Shakespeare wrote in English, guess I’ll start there”. Having learned that the present day head of the country is king Lear, and that the castles are full of ghosts, Clyde started to feel more comfortable with this new civilized society. “My kind of people, crazy kings and spooks. I’ll step round tonight and let them know that one of their own has arrived”.

It was a very productive day. Not only did he ‘learn’ about modern society, he even brushed up on a foreign language. Clyde was ready for his foray into the local village. He had learned his lesson the last time he went out. The racket was still there, so he figured this was the nightly parade back from the king’s fields. (It’s in the book, all peasants’ work for king’s and lords). To play it safe he would turn left instead of right, so as to avoid the pilgrimage. Two steps, then splat, right into a tree. “Ok, no moving til the eyes get adjusted to this non-dark night”. He had always been good at guessing the time, and it should have been pitch black by this time. Well, not having read a lot of science Clyde just figured this part of the world didn’t get quite as dark as his homeland.

With his eyes now focused as well as can be expected, he headed towards the local village. This was one strange looking country. Not a lot of grass, and the ground was hard as a rock. Reaching the edge of another solid path, he bent down to inspect it. Whoosh! “What the hell was that”, he thought. He looked both ways, and didn’t see any lights. He did not know what it was that seemed to be aiming for him, but he did learn that there were always bright lights to signal the arrival. Seeing darkness both ways, he started walking over the hard surface. “This is a strange country, they even paint lines on their paths”.

Making it safely to the other side, he headed for a cluster of lights he had seen. It was getting hard going, he had not had a good neck in weeks. The only one he had found had given him the most toxic tea he had ever had. He made a note to himself to stay away from Indian mystics. Off in the distance he spied an old man. It was not his preferred choice, but better than nothing. He could sense that he had better make this quick, dawn was not that far away. Closing in, he grabbed the old man and baring his fangs, prepared to take a nip. If it weren’t for bad luck, he wouldn’t have any at all. Before he could sink his fangs in, the old man whipped out a cross! “I don’t get it, first an Indian mystic, now a catholic priest. I shoulda stayed where I was”. But Clyde’s luck was on the mend. This priest had a heart and took pity on Clyde. He asked him where he came from, and how long he had been around the area. Not knowing any better, Clyde told the priest, Father Joe, that he had arrived by steamer a couple of weeks earlier, and after drinking the potion given him by his first encounter, had fallen asleep for what felt like days. Father Joe asked Clyde what year it was. An obvious question since his outfit looked a little dated. “Why it’s 1858, of course”. “Hmm, let’s step into the house, I have a little information that may come as rather a shock”.

Accepting the old man’s offer of coffee (he asked the father to take a sip first), and sitting down in very strange surroundings, he was all ears. “Clyde, right? Ok, here is a calendar, you slept a little longer than you thought”. “I guess you are correct, I left in May, and this says July”. “I suggest you look at the year also”. “Funny”, thought Father Joe, “never knew vampires could faint”. The smelling salts revived him. “This says 2002! That can’t be right? That means I slept for close to two hundred years! Hmm, there may be something to that though, things did look a little strange when I got up”. “In what way”? “Well I started towards the village and I saw a whole string of lights moving very fast. I figured it was the village pilgrimage back from the king’s fields. I must admit that you have much bigger wagons than we had back home. Then tonight I found a rock solid path that was painted, and almost got hit again.” “Clyde, I may be able to help you. Where do you live?”

Accompanied by the Father, Clyde led the way back to his cave. Getting smarter, when he found the rock path, he stopped and looked. Clear both ways he stepped across and pointed out the odd paintings. Father Joe laughed. “This is called a highway”. The painting is used to divide it in half. Those strange lights you saw belong to cars and trucks. I will explain what those are when we get back to the house, but let’s continue on”. As they approached the cave, Father Joe surveyed the area. “You are fortunate to still be around. Your cave is right underneath the interstate”. They went back to the father’s house so he could fill Clyde in on modern life.

Father Joe lived on the outskirts of Chicago. He explained modern vehicles and gave a brief rundown on modern American life. It took many hours to explain that we don’t have kings in this country. Cars were even harder to explain. Clyde knew now that he should never have left home. How is a poor vampire supposed to survive in this kind of environment? Again, Father Joe had an answer. “Look Clyde, it is just not safe to go around biting people these days. With all the drug use and Aids, I don’t think it would be a wise idea. I have an extra typewriter I don’t use, since I got the computer. Don’t ask, you don’t want to know what that is. Why don’t we take that and some books back to your cave? I volunteer for the Red Cross, so I think I can provide all of your ‘food’ needs. I’ll throw in a few extra bottles of Geritol to help keep your energy up.

After a few weeks and several hundred pages, Clyde had finished writing his memoirs. The response from publishers was overwhelming. With the use of special sunglasses, it was determined that Clyde could be out in the sun for short periods of time. Him and Father Joe started doing book signings all over the country. Getting Clyde into a car the first time was not too hard. But this poor vampire was not going to test his luck any further and try flying! He did not study much science, but he did know that whatever goes up, must come down, and he could imagine how those things came down. Nope, airplanes were out. Clyde stays on the ground.

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4 Comments »

  1. A marvelous short story. Nice. And posted on the same day I decided to plan a vampire story post on my blog for Halloween too! LOL

    Comment by Marvin D Wilson — October 13, 2008 @ 8:03 pm | Reply

  2. cute and interesting take
    **blood-dripping smile**

    Comment by Beka — October 13, 2008 @ 9:59 pm | Reply

  3. Delightful! Your storyline and charactors are great..Perfect for October and Halloween.

    Comment by Faye Sizemore — October 14, 2008 @ 1:27 am | Reply

  4. Interesting. Are you going to build it into a novel?

    Comment by Rick — October 14, 2008 @ 5:03 pm | Reply


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