At four years old, I knew a girl called Eagle whose mother changed their names to Dust. I thought it was a pity even then.
Twenty years passed. Almost.
I knew a race of more-than-men and more-than-women. I thought I knew what there was to be known of white lips made newly red about the sharp teeth, black hair streaming in transformation into the night, the black night, shot through with stars of gleaming, painful white, and always, running through all of it, the tightening threads of desire for the red blood, the thick blood, the steaming, glorious, wonderfully carnal blood. Blood that was the life, but a life so much more than blood. I could imagine it. I’d read books, I’d watched TV.
I met a woman I’d known from afar. She took me out for the night. So often, I’d admired her necklace, bright, glittering stones in an intricate design, captivating against her white skin. I would have been her slave if she’d wanted one. I thought she might. I dropped the carcass she’d finished with and retrieved, at her dry, hissing command, the jewels this one had carried. Watched her press the diamonds into her flesh, symmetrical, in their places in the pattern. Her eyes were the dullest gems of all.
Dead flesh won’t reject foreign objects, unless you make a special effort. And that’s an alien thought, an alien thought. A stake will do for you. It’ll turn the rest of you into dust. It’s no big loss.
Southend-on-sea, 11th September 2003.