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Fantasticoe 1991

A Bed of Roses

Mary Pate

It was ladies' night out. Erika was pumped. She had on her black knit skirt with an off the shoulder burgundy sweater. She had black hose on with black pumps. She was a sight for sore eyes. Erika was ready for a night on the town. She went down the hall of the apartment building to see if the rest of the clan was ready. They all had to take one last look in the mirror.

As they made their way through the fog, they gossiped and giggled their way to the Piano Factory; an old abandoned warehouse that had recently been turned into a bar and dance hall.

They passed the evening with a few dances and a lot of drinks. From across the bar, Erika's eyes met the man of her dreams. Of course, she had to inform the rest of the girls as soon as possible, but did not want to be obvious about it.

"Don't look now, but what do you think of the hot guy on the other side of the bar?"

At once, seven heads looked in his direction. He blushed, but he loved every minute of it.

"Go for it, he's so hot!"

"Look at those eyes, they make me melt."

"If you let this one get away, you're crazy!"

"I don't know you guys, I don't know anything about him."

"So get over there and find out about him!"

Erika just sat there. She stole glances from across the bar. Her friends finally talked her into cutting lose, and dancing a little, but then a slow song came on, and she couldn't avoid him. He asked her to dance, and she bashfully accepted. They danced and just gazed into one another's eyes. Erika's were sea blue to go with her sun-bleached hair. His were dark brown to match his dark hair and fare skin. They lost themselves in each other and failed to realize that the music was over. When they came back to reality, she told him her name was Erika, and he told her that his was Curt.

She joined her friends, and they asked her all about him. All she could tell them was that his name was Curt.

The rest of the evening was spent by stealing glances of one another, but the time came for Erika and company to leave. As they walked back to the apartments, they sensed someone behind them, but could not see anyone through the fog.

Erika opened her apartment door, and flipped on the lights. The patio door was opened, and the curtains were waving back and forth in the breeze. She turned on the television, and sat on the sofa. Soon a figure appeared in the patio doorway. It was Curt. At first, she was frightened, but then she settled down after he came in and they talked for a while. He told her that he was more of a night person, and usually slept his days away. This intrigued her, but in her condition, she did not pursue anything. She told him that she was a part-time, fifth year student.

Both of them sensed the other's strong feelings. They were getting close, and were both completely comfortable with the other. The alcohol that was in their system made the conversation seem very friendly. It was getting late, and Erika questioned Curt's driving ability. She invited him to stay with her. After all, she thought to herself, what better way to get to know a person than in bed.

Erika slipped into a sexy negligee. Curt slipped into nothing at all. They talked for a little while, and one thing lead to another. Soon they were making passionate love, and things continued from there. After some time, just before Erika fell asleep, Curt kissed her lips, and told her good-bye, but she thought he said good- nite, and she fell asleep.

When she woke in the morning, he was gone, and all he left her was a red rose, and two red marks on her neck. She did not think much of the marks, for she had seen hickeys before. However, these did seem a bit odd.

Two months went by, and Erika was sick all the time. She threw up all the time, and just didn't feel good. She went to the doctor, and he ran some tests. When they came back, the doctor told her she was pregnant. This certainly wasn't in Erika's plans, but she also didn't want to give it up either. She only told her closest friend Susan, and Susan swore she would not tell a soul. Erika graduated when she was four months along. She told everyone that she had gotten a job in another state, and she promised to write and call, but she never did. Susan tried to get a hold of her, but her many attempts failed.

She made numerous trips to the doctor, but never did she leave without them telling her something was wrong; however, they had a very hard time figuring out what it was.

The time came and Erika was ready to give birth. She went through all of it on her own. The lights were glaring hot, but with one more excruciating push, she felt the new life she created vacate the womb, and relieve her of her burden.

An astonished gasp escaped the doctor, and the head nurse had a look of horror on her face. Erika strained to get her head high enough to see the leathery wings soaked with fluid. As she glanced over his newborn face, she saw the curved fang escape his mouth. He had thick, black hair, dark eyes, and wings. When the doctor tried to spank him, he made no noise. When he carried him passed the mirror, he did not have a reflection.

Going back through her pregnancy to find out how this had happened, Erika and the doctor discussed the possibilities. Then Erika remembered the red marks, and together they realized that Curt had to be a vampire.

The baby vamp did not assume the roles of normal vampires, at least not for the short while that he lived. Doctors believe that it was due to the way Erika took care of herself, and that he had no contact or communication with his father.

He died a short while after birth, and upon his coffin was placed a red rose.

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Fantasticoe 1991