by Hugh Wesley
Blood is thicker than water, and thicker still when you beef it up with a nice meal first.
|“Aren’t you going to eat?” Frank motioned toward the table in front of him, loaded with steak and potatoes, bread, vegetables, even fresh fruit.
Caleb stood near the open window and let the cool autumn breeze wash over his clammy skin.
“I’ll eat later,” he said.
Frank shrugged. “Suit yourself.”
Caleb walked to the table, turned a chair around backwards and straddled it as he sat down.
“Frank, you been a good partner all these years. I couldn’t have done even a third of our heists on my own.”
Frank grunted. “This spread your way of telling me my services are no longer needed? A gentle parting of the ways, so to speak?”
Caleb shook his head and pursed his lips. “No, it ain’t like that, Frank. It’s just …”
“Well,” Caleb leaned in closer. “How does my face look to you, Frank?”
“That’s a mighty strange question, Caleb. You feeling alright?”
“I don’t know … that’s why I’m asking. How does my face look? Is it pale, or does it look healthy?”
“Hell, Caleb, can’t you look at your own face? There’s a mirror right there!” Frank jutted a biscuit-filled fist toward the dresser.
“That’s just it, Frank. I looked fine last night while I was shaving.” Caleb took a deep breath. “But I got up this morning feeling shaky, weak, and cold, and the window was standing open.”
He grabbed the side of his neck and winced. “My neck hurts, too.”
“Probably catching a cold.”
“Maybe. But … well … when I looked again, it was gone.”
“What was gone? The mirror?”
“No, Frank. My reflection.”
“What are you talking about?”
“Now tell me, Frank, do these look right to you?”
Before his friend could say another word, Caleb pounced across the table and buried his fangs into Frank’s neck.