Once upon a time…

The stories Star used to tell me always started like that. Kid's stories. I wasn't really a kid any more even back then, but I didn't complain because my own mother never did anything like that. It was nice to be babied like that, even if it was only for a little while. That was…wow, almost five years ago now. Where does the time go?

I don't see Star much any more, or Michael or anyone else. I got sent home after…what happened, and my parents disapproved. I still can't believe they sent me back. Didn't they realise I ran away for a reason?

Five years since I left my life as a vampire behind and went home. It seems like forever. I still haven't told anyone what happened, which means I have to talk to a shrink once a week, but if I'd told them the whole story I woulda been locked up in a white padded room with my arms tied behind my head for the rest of my life. I'm almost scared that if they knew the truth they wouldn't let me keep holding on to those memories. They would have given me pills and therapy, and convinced me it was all a dream or a hallucination.

I wish I could talk to Star or someone else who knows what happened. Just five minutes where I don't have to pretend it didn't happen, you know? But it's probably better that way. I phoned her a few months ago, and she sounded…happy: she prefers things this way, and I want to hate her for it. Didn't the time we spent with the guys mean anything to her? I know how much it meant to me. I remember clinging to the back of Dwayne's motorbike as we raced through nighttime streets, how proud I was at that age to be entrusted with Paul's beloved stereo. I can still taste stolen Chinese food and the metallic tang of blood. I would have done it if she hadn't stopped me. I would have killed, and turned, and spent the rest of eternity Lost. And I would have loved every moment.

I can't believe those months of darkness meant nothing to her. Doesn't she remember hot, short summer nights where no-one could be bothered feeding, when we just horsed around on the boardwalk or lounged in the cave? The exhilaration of the hunt, even if we never shared in the kill? The sensation, after so long, of finally belonging somewhere? I know how much it meant to me. It was home for me, more so than anywhere else has ever been. I never wanted to lose that life.

Yeah. So here I am, standing in the dust on the road to LA with my thumb out and a duffel bag by my feet. With luck they won't notice I'm gone till around noon. No-one's even slowed down yet, but dawn's a long way off, and I'm hopeful. I'll get there…one way or the other. There are other vampires out there somewhere. And I'm going to find them.

I'm going home.