When I woke up I was dead.
I didn't immediately realize this. I thought I just had a bad case of food poisoning. But no, I was a creature of the night—and I'm not talking Ebonics.
I was a vampire.
I know how this sounds. Who knew that vampires actually existed? I've watched the campy movies and TV shows just like everyone else. And for that reason alone, I could not have dreamed that vampirism is based on truth.
Let's face it. I don't meet the profile of the typical girl turned vampire or girl turned vampire killer. Bella is too tragic, Buffy is a cheerleader, and I'm a black girl from the 'hood. I work nine to five at a local cable company. Drop-dead gorgeous men are not stalking me, and my rounded body does not fit neatly into a size two.
So when I awoke that night sicker than I had ever been in my life, hugging the porcelain god, and puking my guts up, I just attributed it to that damned buffet at Club Midnight. It would be a while before I realized that I had already taken my dying breath. As I lay there on the cool tiled floor—not even caring that I had failed to mop it in over two months—I swore to myself that I'd never eat at another free buffet on ladies night. And then I probably wished for death … which, unfortunately, had already been granted to me.
My best friend Arnitra and I had gone to a new club where the music was supposed to be more than just rap and with DJ's who knew how to mix dance, hip hop, and techno. Happy hour included a free buffet that at the time I thought was banging. But somewhere between the sesame chicken wings and lasagna, the shit they called food must have gone rank.
I sat up quickly and spewed into the toilet bowl. Just thinking about food was making me weak, and I started feeling light-headed again. I'm not saying that I have many blackouts because of drinking, but I wasn't worried about it. I certainly didn't equate it to being dead.
The next time that I opened my eyes I had a hellafied hangover. My ears were ringing, and everything looked strange and bright. I flushed the toilet before I got sick again and took a long hot shower. I was planning to crawl into my bed with a bottle of aspirin, but first I was going to call Arnitra and find out if she had gotten sick, too.
I'm not saying that Arnitra and I are hoochie mamas, but we had gotten into the habit of hitting the hot clubs on ladies nights for the cheap drinks and good music more than to meet guys. I don't make a great deal of money, and ladies night is a free meal. Besides, I'd heard a lot about Club Midnight, but it was the next county over from Cincinnati and no one likes to drink, dance, and spend two hours getting back home in the late hours of the morning.
Now I wish I'd never gone ...
I picked up the phone and climbed into bed dialing Arnitra's number.
"Hello?" Came my friend's slightly cooler than normal voice.
"Oh, is this my friend, the ho? Why haven't you been answering your cell phone, ho? And how are you going to diss me and leave the club with that funky looking Rasta Man?"
"What?" I sat up alarmed. "What do you mean I left the club with a Rasta?"
My friend's voice softened. "Kim, are you okay?"
"Y ... Yeah. Let me call you back." I hung up the phone because I remembered. How the hell had I forgotten in the first place?
This guy had come up to me when I was on my way to the restroom. I didn't really like his approach because he touched my elbow to get my attention, but his eyes were the strangest, most intriguing eyes I'd ever seen. He wasn't all that much to look at, but something about him drew me. Running down the small of his back were dreads that had definitely seen better things. And he was wearing a shirt and pants combination that hadn't been fashionable in ten years. I mean, in a room full of fine-ass men, you certainly wouldn't pick him out of the crowd.
"Pritty laty," he said in heavily accented English while lightly gripping my elbow.
I pulled away from his touch and looked into his eyes. For a split second I felt amused, but then his eyes ... drew me.
After that everything was a blur. Oh my God! He slipped me a roofie! I reached down and felt between my thighs but because I was sore all over and feeling miserable I could not tell if something had happened without my knowledge. I began to shake with rage at the idea that someone might have drugged and done something disgusting to me.
And that's when something strange happened. My mouth got wet with saliva, and my gums began to tingle. I could feel my teeth becoming pointy and sharp.
"What the hell?" I jumped up to look into my mirror when my phone rang. Damn ... I must be sick because I was standing in front of my mirror a split second after I thought about my mirror.
Ignoring the phone, I stared at my teeth and considered how quickly I had moved.
The ringing of the phone captured my attention though I distracted by my new set of teeth, my quick movements, and the Rasta-rapist.
"Uh … hello?
"Kim," Arnitra said. "Can I ask you a question? Why the hell did you just hang up on me? Is that Rasta still there?"
"Arnitra, something is definitely not right," I muttered past my new teeth. "What exactly happened at the club last night?"
"That jacked up Rasta bogarted all of your time. At first I thought you were just being funny and that we were going to talk about him after he left. Then the next thing I knew you were walking out the door with him. You don't remember this? I ran after you and you just said that ... what was his name? ... Tige! That Tige was going to take you home and you'd call me later. You don't remember any of this?"
I lied. I had to—at least until I could get everything that was happening to me straight in my head. "Yeah, I remember that part. Sorry, I was totally ... but I'm fine. Look, let me call you back, okay?" I disconnected and went back to the mirror to examine my teeth. They were still there—long and pointy and dangerously sharp. I tried to push them back up into my gums. No luck.
I started noticing other changes. I don't know how I had initially missed them. My only excuse is that, well, I was either suffering the after-effects of some date **** drug, or ... I was newly undead. Should I be scared? Yes, but strangely I wasn't. I backed up and studied myself in the mirror.
Recently I had made a decision to improve myself both body and soul, and I have been making a conscious effort to eat better and exercise more. I joined a gym, which I have faithfully attended.
However, the changes I was seeing weren't a result of working out at the gym. My face had taken on a glow that looked as if I had gone to a salon and been expertly made-up. I touched my cheeks knowing that I didn't have any makeup on. I had scrubbed my face in the shower. And if anything I should have been looking like hell after being as sick as I was.