Lucky Elk: False Bearings
The stupid orientation was all because of the Iranians. And all I could do was worry that I'd be found out.
Three months ago, because they were sick of all the crap going on in Iraq, the guys in charge of Iran decided to send in an army. It wasn't a normal army. No, they decided they didn't want to risk humans, which seems odd, I know. Instead, they sent in an army full of zombies and those wind creatures, eframs, I think they're called.
Suddenly, everyone knew that "creatures of myth," also called "the spiritually enabled," exist.
"Vampires," said the guy in grey suit and had bleached hair, clicking to the next picture, of the word "Vampire", "may be the most dangerous yet discussed."
And I shivered. Not like a normal brrr-type shiver. This one started at the base of my ass, worked its way up my spine, out to the tips of my fingers, and right back to my ass.
See, I'm a vampire. I've been one for a few years now. And, while it's not a bad life, it's not as glamorous as movies, tv shows, and books make it out to be.
The guy clicked something and the picture changed and it was a normal looking chick, with, probably, fake boobs.
"They look like us," he said and clicked again. "They often look better than us."
The vampire on the screen was a shot of Stuart Townsend in Queen of the Damned. His hair, stringy. Blood dripping off his lips. Sexy as hell, sure, but that's not the way it works. And couldn't he have shown Brad Pitt, instead? Now there was a hot vampire.
When I turned, I didn't become any better looking. My hair didn't become fuller or shinier. The layer of full body fat didn't disappear. And I still need my goddamned glasses to see. All of this had to come from movies. They always show vampires slowly seducing people before going for the bite. There are probably some out there like that, but they were probably the kind of people who went to bars and played the slow pick-up game. The kind who enjoyed playing with their sex toy more than the actual sex. Sickos.
"Vampires," he said with another click, "are stronger than us."
The picture was one of some guy in dark clothes standing in front of flames lifting something heavy, a car or a beam or something. There was no way to tell if it was a vampire. And it probably wasn't.
See, I'm a bit faster than I was before I turned, but not the blur movies say we are, and a bit stronger. I guess those things have to come with the territory. We're hunters, right? We hunt humans, right? So, we have to be faster and stronger than them to give us a better chance to catch the runners. Still, though, if I could lift like fifty pounds before I turned and now I can lift like sixty pounds, not a great improvement, is it.
"There are two easy ways to recognize a vampire," said the guy, clicking to a picture of that old black and white Dracula guy. "The first is the fangs." He used a laser pointer and made little circles around the guy's mouth.
I snorted. I couldn't help myself. Fangs retract. If they didn't, would any of us be able to live in cities and stuff after the first time Dracula was made? Way back then, people would have seen our long, pointy teeth and they'd have killed us. Now, if it wasn't such a strain, we could keep 'em out and people would just think they were fake, or that we had our teeth filed, or something like that.
"The second," he clicked again, "is that they don't show up in mirrors, or any other types of reflections."
True. I don't know why, but we don't show up in mirrors. Makes getting ready for work a real bitch, too. We show up on film, though, which is weird. Why one and not the other?
It's easy to avoid mirrors and things, though. And most of the time, people don't even pay attention to things like that. They see it and move on. I guess their brain just fills in the holes.
"If you see one," he said, fiddling with his clicker, "don't try to take care of it. You'll only make things worse. Call the police. They're trained for this."
Click. And the screen went black.
The guy walked to the back of the break room and turned on the lights. "There you have it," he said. "If you're careful" He looked at Juan. "If you're prepared." He looked at Christie. "If you use good judgment." He looked at me, finishing up the people in the back row. "Not one of these creatures of myth will be a threat." He smiled a bleached, capped tooth smile. "Thank you."
A couple of people clapped. They weren't that enthusiastic, though.
Joe, the bar-slash-server supervisor stood up. "Before we leave," he said, "I just want to thank you all for coming and I want thank the management of the Lucky Elk Casino--" he looked up at the security camera and winked "--for this presentation. I know I feel safer already." He grinned; broadly, his teeth weren't capped or bleached. "Now get back to work."
On our way out the door, I said to Juan and Christie, "You know, working in a casino, you sure meet a lot of freaks. Too bad they're all running things.