“But it’s more than one dead human. They think it’s a serial killer,” I said.
“A human serial killer.”
“I don’t know why that matters. Murder is murder.”
I leaned back deeper in the chair. I hated hearing about how little vampires cared for life. Just because they lived forever didn’t mean that everything else was incidental.
“I’m going to find out whoever did this to Jane, and I don’t care if he killed other people or he’s a vampire or the prince of Egypt. I’m gonna kill that bastard.” It wasn’t until I said it aloud that I realized that I meant it.
“That’s why you’re trying to pump me for information?” Olivia looked at me over her shoulder. “You think you’re going to get revenge?” She raised a sardonic eyebrow and laughed.
“What? Why is that funny? I kicked your ass today,” I said defensively.
“I’m old!” Olivia laughed again. “And I am out of practice. If you’re serious about this, you’re going to need someone new to train you. I’m not making the cut.”
“Of course I’m serious about it.” I stood up. “Someone killed my best friend!”
“Easy, sweetheart,” Olivia said, not unkindly. “I know. You’re a passionate girl. That’s what I like about you.”
“So what does that mean?”
“It means that you need to grieve properly, and then we’ll talk.” She rolled back over on her stomach, letting her hair fall around like a shawl, and that was the end of topic for her. Olivia liked me, but she had little tolerance for any conversation that didn’t interest her.
“Whatever,” I sighed. “I’m heading out then.”
“Are you going down to the club?” Olivia perked up a little.
“I guess,” I shrugged. “Milo and Bobby are down there, so I’ll probably check it out for a minute.”
“Can you send up a girl then?”
“What girl?” I asked wearily.
“Any girl.” She waved vaguely at me and sunk deeper into the couch. “You know what I like.”
“You know I’m not sending up a girl, right?” I said, pushing the elevator button so the doors would open.
I didn’t like encouraging her use of humans as food, but she had a harem of girls that loved it when she bit them. After what that had done to Jane, I knew I shouldn’t even tolerate the idea, but at least Olivia didn’t kill the girls and treated them with some respect.
Olivia used to drink blood every day, sometimes several times a day, which is how a vampire gets drunk. The blood hits us hard, making us feel high and happy. But if we only eat when we need to, about once a week or so, the high doesn’t last long, and we’re functional.
Since she’s been training me, Olivia’s cut down a lot. Before that, she was pretty strung out and incoherent. Even now, the reason I beat her has nothing to do with her age. Drinking too much blood made her slow and lazy.
The elevator opened into a black hallway at the back of the club. I made my way through a labyrinth of black tunnels to make it to the main floor. The first few times I went up to Olivia’s suite, I got horribly lost, but I finally had it down.
I pushed open a massive door, revealing the dance floor splashed in cool blue light. The DJ played a new song by Cobra Starship, and the crowd surged on the floor. A lot of them were vampires and donors, but not all of them. Some of them were just normal people who just came here to dance. Maybe that’s all that would happen for them. But maybe, they’d end up as someone’s snack tonight.
I ignored the thought. I couldn’t save every person, and most of them didn’t even need saving. Vampires generally tried not to kill people, because it made eating and living a lot easier if there weren’t a pile of corpses lying about.
I was just starting to realize how revolting this lifestyle really was. But right now, I didn’t need to worry about everybody in the club. I just needed to find my brother and Bobby.
They weren’t that hard to spot, thanks to Bobby’s newfound love of break dancing. In the corner by the bar, the crowd had dispersed a little so he could try out of some of his slick moves. They weren’t terrible, but he wouldn’t make it past round two on So You Think You Can Dance.
Ever supportive, Milo stood at the side, cheering him on. I walked over to them and watched Bobby twirl about for a minute, then tapped Milo on the shoulder.
“Isn’t the first day of school tomorrow?” I asked. The fanciest thing about being a vampire was that I didn’t have to shout to be heard over the music. I’m sure Bobby couldn’t hear anything, but Milo nodded.
“What time is it?” Milo asked as he clapped when Bobby landed a hand jump thing.
“It’s after three in the morning.”
“Shit,” Milo grimaced. “I didn’t realize it was so late.” He left his position at the sidelines to get Bobby’s attention. “Bobby!” Reluctantly, Bobby stopped his dancing and got to his feet. The crowd applauded, but I’m not sure if it was over his performance or because he stopped. “We gotta get going.”
“Alright!” Bobby shrugged and headed to the door, but Milo stopped him. Bobby was shirtless, wearing only a pair of black skinny jeans, so he could show off his tattooed torso.
“Where’s your shirt?” Milo asked him.
“Uh… I don’t know?” Bobby looked around, but everyone had gone back to doing their own thing, and his sweatshirt wasn’t lying about. “Whatever. It’s fine. Let’s go.”
“It’s like twenty degrees outside!” Milo sounded irritated. “And you’re covered in sweat! You’ll get hypothermia if you go out like that!” He turned to me apologetically. “Sorry. We gotta go find his shirt. Or at least a shirt.”
Milo and Bobby disappeared onto the dance floor to scour for his shirt, but my bet was on them coming up empty handed. Milo wore a thin tee shirt, so he didn’t have anything to lend him. I looked around for anything Bobby could put on.
I bumped into a girl when I wasn’t paying attention.
“Sorry,” I said, glancing over at her. Then I realized who it was, and we both stopped.
Before I had turned, a pair of vampires had decided they wanted to eat me. Peter had taken care of the guy, but the girl – Violet – had gotten away. She had this whole Halloween get up when she was with him – too much makeup, fake fangs, and bright purple hair.