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Sheree Westerbrooke stood in the front of the full-length mirror in her bedroom, admiring her new Goth look. It had taken her days to find just the ‘right’ ensemble, but it had been worth it. If one wanted to fit in, one had to look the part. After all, she couldn’t just waltz into a vampire club looking like a tourist. She needed fake fangs, some black Goth style clothing, shoes, and jewelry. She had debated dying her shoulder-length blonde hair black, but decided to buy a long black wig instead. Her own mother wouldn’t recognize her.
Sheree smiled at her reflection, pleased. She had always loved vampires - the ugly ones with pointy ears and hairy hands, like Nosferatu. The suave, handsome ones, like George Hamilton, Gerard Butler, and Frank Langella. The comic ones who spoke with funny accents, like Leslie Nielsen. The scary ones, like Gary Oldham and Christopher Lee. She loved them in comic books and movies, in novels and fantasy magazines.
She had vampire posters on her walls, a collection of vampire figurines, a Lady Dracula costume she wore on Halloween. She had seen every movie and play about the undead she could find, read every book of fiction and non-fiction in the local library. She had even tried her hand at writing vampire poetry which, you should pardon the pun, sucked.
It didn’t matter that Sheree’s parents and friends told her there was no such thing. They insisted that vampires by any other name - Nosferatu, Undead, Dracula, vampyr, blood-sucking creatures of the night - whatever - simply didn’t exist except in low-budget horror movies and novels.
But Sheree refused to accept that. People had believed in vampires for thousands of years. Since the beginning of recorded history, every culture and civilization had its own vampire legend. Surely, if vampires were only a myth, any interest in them would have faded away long ago.
Ergo, vampires must exist. There were vampire chat rooms online, vampire night clubs and hangouts. Out of all those hundreds and thousands of people who were pretending to be vampires, there had to be at least one who was the real deal.
And Sheree was determined to find him – or her - no matter where he or she was hiding.
Being rich, single, and bored, Sheree had decided to visit every vampire hangout between California and New York until she found what she was looking for. Hence, her new look.
Taking a deep breath, Sheree picked up her new Ferragamo black leather bag which held her make-up, cell phone, wallet, and a sharp wooden stake. Plucking a small bottle of holy water from her dresser, she dropped it into her bag.
“Don’t leave home without it,” she said, grinning as she headed out the door.
Drac’s Dive, located in Hollywood, California, was Sheree’s first stop, She paused inside the entrance, letting her eyes adjust to the dim lighting. At first, it looked like the place was empty, but, gradually, she realized it looked that way because the walls were painted black and that everyone in the place – waitresses, bartenders, the band and patrons - were all attired in black clothing.
The air reeked of alcohol, perspiration, and incense.
As soon as she took a seat at the bar, three men approached her, all wanting to “get to know her better.” The first was tall and thin, with greasy blonde hair, close-set brown eyes and a long, thin nose. The second was short, with brown hair, blue eyes and regular features. The third had short black hair and dark brown eyes. And fangs that were obviously fake when he smiled at her.
She declined each invitation. After thirty minutes and several more questionable offers which she also refused, she left the club. So, she hadn’t found a real vampire at Drac’s Dive, but there were other clubs out there that catered to the Goth crowd. And what better place for a vampire to hang out than in the midst of a bunch of Undead wannabes?
Pulling a slip of paper from her pocket, she perused the list of names she had found on the Internet – Blood and Wine, The Black Rose, Nosferatu’s Den, Demon’s Delight.
A check of the addresses showed Nosferatu’s Den was only two blocks away. Maybe she would have better luck there.