It wasn’t until they’d entered the residential area that Elsie realized she had two penlights in her hand: hers and Hildreth’s. She handed it back to him without a word.
Because she honestly didn’t know what to say to him.
Am I being unfair to him? He’s a good person. So, what am I supposed to do? Throw myself at him? Confess feelings for him that I don’t even know I possess? I don’t know.
She glanced at him and felt guilty as she compared him to Ambrose. It was an unfair comparison in many ways and she knew it.
She looked away from him.
What do I want? Do I really want Ambrose as he really is? With all of his awful vampiric lusts and wants and needs?
Her heart ached. I’d rather just have him as a plain man. One who will love me and be there for me and understand me. One who can go out with me during the day and not become day sick. One I could cook meals for. Just an ordinary man.
So. Where does that leave Hildreth? She smiled. He’s more than an ordinary man. He is a hunter like me. He understands the responsibilities I bear.
But what are my feelings for him?
I like him. I know that much for certain. I don’t know if it could ever be more than that. Maybe I don’t want it to be.
I want simplicity.
I want stability.
I want steady sameness.
I don’t want him to reveal his dark side. I don’t want to know if he has one.
I don’t want to be hurt again.
The city’s glow faded into the far background as they left the residential area. Houses became sparse and overgrown and beaten out of shape with missing windows and sagging door frames.
The road meandered and disintegrated into dirt and stones and pot holes of considerable size.
Elsie and Hildreth turned on their penlights, which dented the darkness but did nothing to break it.
“What if he isn’t alone? What if he’s invited some other vampires over to have a full drunken vampire orgy?”
She laughed. “That would never happen.”
“How do you know?”
“He’s a vampire.” She smiled at him. “Have you ever known a vampire to willingly hang out with other vampires?”
“Because it doesn’t happen. They’re all the same: selfish and territorial.” Her mood lapsed back into darkness. “They’re all like that.”
He squeezed her hand and she liked the feel of his hand.