Vampire Games (Chapter Forty-six)

The evening was warm and the front door was open.

Outside, children played in the cul-de-sac, laughing and sometimes shouting. I heard the rattle of bikes and skateboards and scooters. Not surprisingly, I didn't hear my own kids.

These days, they stayed in with me. Somehow, some way, we had grown closer, and for that, I was pleasantly surprised. My life had gotten easier, too. Feigning eating or stomach aches and avoiding mirrors had been more stressful than I realized. Now, such worries – at least around my kids – were gone.

Thank God.

Yes, they still had many questions: What did I eat? How often do I eat? Did I kill people? How strong was I? Could I kick Daddy's ass? Could I fly? And so on.

I answered the ones that were age-appropriate, although I suspected my own daughter could look far deeper into me than anyone else ever could.

Dammit.

No secrets, I thought.

School was nearly out. The kids in the neighborhood were ready for summer. Everyone but my kids were ready. They were, at this very moment, playing a game of chess together since they had once again lost their TV, video games, computer games, iPod, iPad, Kindle, Nook, laptop, PS3, and phone privileges. Every now and then Anthony would yell that she was reading his mind and call out my name, in which I would shout back for Tammy to quit reading her brother's mind.

Normal stuff.

Now, as I was folding laundry and watching the tail end of a new cable show called Vampire Love Story about, of all things, MMA fighters who happened to be vampires, a car pulled up in the cul-de-sac. I looked out the window. I didn't know the car, but I sure as hell knew the tall figure who emerged.

It was Fang.