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[ Pardoner ] How They Broke Up

How They Broke Up



Anyone who thinks vampires are suave and graceful need to spend about ten minutes with Alex. He was turned at twenty-three and will be an awkward, horny, hungry, arrested adolescent forever. Or until I kill him.

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“I’m not saying vampires shouldn’t Skank,” I said as I put books back on shelves, “I’m saying you shouldn’t. You knock shit over.”

Alex threw himself onto the sofa and let out a tortured, put-upon sigh. Poor guy. His was such a hard life -- not allowed to dance like an idiot in our tiny, crowded apartment. Cry me a fucking river.

He scratched and sighed again, then looked at me to see if I’d forgiven him yet. I hadn’t.

He pouted, giving me a look that could melt glass.

I went for a walk.

When I came home the apartment was clean. That’s how Alex apologizes -- he cleans or cooks. Today he’d done both; he handed me a bacon sandwich when I walked in.

“Full moon in five days,” he said.

“I know.”

He shrugged. “Figured that’s why you were in such a bad mood. I forgive you.”

“Interested in testing your immortality?”

“Not as such.”

“Then back off.” I stood in the middle of the room and ate my sandwich. Alex folded himself into a corner of the sofa and smoked. Things were tense between us but it had nothing to do with the moon. It wasn’t about who we were individually.

“Maybe it’s time you moved out,” I said.

Alex sunk deeper into the sofa. “And go where?”

“Dunno. John’s, maybe? One of the girls? Irena has had her eye on you for a while.”

“John and Irena would both want it to mean something. I don’t want a relationship.” His eyes darkened slightly. “Not with them, anyhow.”

I growled low: a warning.

He turned and mumbled into the back of the sofa. “And you don’t want one with me.”

“I don’t want one with anyone, so stop taking it so damn personal.”

“I can’t help it! I love you, you fucking asshole.”

I sat down on the edge of the sofa and leaned back against him. I felt him relax. “You love the fact that I’m immune to you.”

“Maybe five years ago, yeah. Kinda over that now.”

“But you’re not over the idea that we should be ‘something more’.”

“Everyone thinks you’re my boyfriend already.”

“Everyone thinks we’re normal. That doesn’t mean we have to be. Or even could be.”

“I don’t want to be normal.”

“And I don’t want to be your boyfriend.”

“Why not?”

“Because it’s stupid! Jesus, Alex! We’re almost forty. And it’s not like calling you my boyfriend will suddenly make me want to have sex with you!”

After a long pause he said “maybe it’s time I moved out.”
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