Old Tastes Sweeter!
a story by
Luciane de Souza
I don’t know the date, place, or even the time of writing these words—simply because I do not know. The last thing I remember is hanging a blue silk dress on the clothesline to dry, after having arrived from a graduation party. Then he came, grabbed my arm, and took me.
I don’t know how long ago that I became his prisoner, or as he says, his ‘preferred.’ The worst is having to see him do this repeatedly with others. The most touching scene for me was when he let little Amelia return to her parents. I think that I exert a certain influence on him, at least to some extent. He has made it clear that I will not starve because I feel sorry for his prey.
I decided to write this letter to let my family know what happened to me. Shortly after we left, I watched a newscast where my husband asked me to come back. I cried for three whole days. I did not die dehydrated because he watched me all the time and did not allow me to go without eating or drinking. This led me to believe that he might one day let me go. “Concern” for me is his instinct. Nobody eats favorite candy too fast. We like to taste it—and that’s what he does to me. Today is Christmas Morning—or Christmas Eve—and he bought me a blue silk scarf, the same shade of the dress that I hung on the line. It has been three or four Christmases since he kidnapped me, and today was the first day I actually thought I was dying. The feeling started when he took the last victim for our stash. Our. I have started to think we are a couple!
He spends seven or nine days watching the ones he chooses as food. He watches every step of the person (mostly women) and observes how they behave; how they eat and with whom they relate. He prefers older. He says that the blood of mature women is sweeter; that knowledge about the life we have is ingrained in our blood. I’ll never forget the day he kissed me for the first time, starting at my face to reach my neck. His bite was fast and delicate, barely felt when he finished. I think the amount of blood he sucked from me… sorry, I don’t want you know about it. It would be humiliating and scary if my grandchildren knew.
When he decides, he lurks and waits for an opportunity to get what he wants. He only come out of hiding at night. His preference at this time is difficult to understand, but he settles for young girls. These are the ones who suffer most. He locks them somewhere far away so I do not see, but I can hear their screams. I do not know if he knows I can hear, or worse, if he does this to terrify me! He keeps them for five to seven days. Then he rapes them and sucks their blood. When they die, he throws them in the house where they lived. This is cruel.
Five days ago, he brought a girl and her younger sister Amelia. I begged him to give Amelia back. She was no more than eight years. It was not fair that she should die that way. When he agreed with me, a glimmer of hope crossed my heart. The days passed quickly. I heard the cries of the older sister, and during the day, I counted the steps to get to where she was. With all the confusion of Amelia, he had forgotten to fasten the padlock that held the chains on my legs to the basement girder.
He always brought food and water for me, and I kept some of that food and water for the girl. By surprise, he walked in, grabbed my hair, and threw me against the wall. I feel two or more ribs are broken, and certainly my right foot is twisted.
“What do you think you’re doing?” His bloodshot eyes shined, his teeth whiter than I have ever seen. “How did you get out?”
“I just… she is hurt…” I did not know how to explain that we both tried to think of a way to escape.
He picked me up and sat me on the mattress where the girl lay tied. “Pay attention to this,” he said softly. “Watch.” He lay down on the girl. His hands roamed all over her skeletal body. The food I gave her was not enough to supply all the blood he took overnight. He bit her neck and lay still, only moaning as her blood entered his mouth. I turned my face. I could not bear to see this scene. When he finished, he took me back to the basement. I never discovered how he could find those horrible places. He closed the padlock and left. During the day, the young girl—I had thought she was dead—came through the door. She wobbled and held to the walls. Maybe she was just making herself look weak. I mean, she was visibly weak, but not too weak.
Everything happened quickly. She held a piece of wood. When he came in, he looked at us with an anger in his eyes that left me paralyzed. She had no chance. When she got close enough to drive the stake through his heart, he simply grabbed her neck with one hand and with the other pulled her by the hair until her head was severed from her body. I fainted.
When I woke up, he was sitting in front of me holding the head of the girl. He had a creepy smile on its thin, black lips. His skin was as white as a paper and his long black hair was shiny and silky. He could have easily be likened to a fairytale prince, if he had not been a monster. “You want to leave me?” he asked, still smiling. “Want to go home?”
I sighed. “Yes… but not like the others…” I was sure he was joking with me, as he always did in the early days. I wanted to go back alive! He looked at me in a way that frightened me. He was no longer smiling. Blood dripped from the head no longer, and I did not see the body. He stood and held out his hand. He took me to a window. I could see a tower covered by a thin layer of snow.
“Where are we?”
“Don’t you recognize that building?” he asked, seeming to be astonished.
“It is the building that is in front of your home!”
I stared at him in disbelief. I looked back out the window. Yes! We were a few streets behind my house. But, how?
“Every Christmas I bring you here. You never noticed?”
I looked and saw his face illuminate demonically. He did this for fun! Without thinking of anything but returning to my family, I pushed him away and ran, stumbling, to the door. I hit my face on his chest, hard as rock.
“You will not come back!” He held me by the waist and pressed his icy lips on my neck. I knew what would happen.
When I returned from my dream world, he was no longer with me. I wandered through a small space, I could not think of anything until I found this piece of paper, which is actually the back of a cookbook. It is burnt. I think this is the old house of the Silva family, which burned years ago.
So here I am, writing what has happened to me. Every moment I go to the window hoping to see someone to deliver these words. Who knows? Someone may enter this house during the day and save me! He is likely to go off to hunt another victim. So, if you can call the police or a lot of men to come here… If this is not possible, I just wish my family lives happy, do not worry about me. He is cruel, but he is never really a monster to me.
I almost felt sorry for her when I caught her handing this letter to a man passing by the window. You see, she knew that I have great hearing. Why did she yell at the man approaching? She knew I would not forgive something like this and that man would also pay! I really believed that she knew me. After all, we spent six years together. It was really a shame to have to suck all of her blood from her. I even enjoyed her company! Humans are really funny! Anyway, I will personally deliver her letter. This seemed to be a strong desire of hers. Never before has a woman of 86 years excited me as much as she. It will certainly be a long time until I find another as nice as her.