“She said she’d meet us in the alley,” said Victor. “By the Burger King downtown. She said she had Kim Jong Un and Shitkicker Kush.”

“No way,” said Henry.

“I swear to God,” said Victor.

“Is she hot?” Harrison asked.

“I don’t know, I didn’t see her,” said Victor. “Just texted and heard her voice. She sounds hot.”

They were in Victor’s parents’ basement, their usual hangout.

“There was one catch, though,” said Victor. “The method of payment. She says she wants to suck our blood.”

“Wait, what?”

“She wants to suck our blood,’ said Victor. “As payment for the weed.”

“She wants to suck our blood, like, what, like a vampire?”

“Yeah.”

“She’s a vampire?”

“That’s what she said. That’s I’ve been lead to believe.”

Two minutes later, the three of them were in Victor’s car and headed to town.

“So, she like, told you she’s a vampire,” said Henry. “She just, like, straight up came out and said, ‘I’m a vampire and if you want this Shitkicker Kush all you gotta do is let me suck your blood?’”

“Basically,” said Victor.

“That’s some bullshit, man,” Harrison said. “She’s probably just one of those people that believes she’s a vampire, all hyped up cause it’s almost Halloween.”

“Where did you hear about her again?”

“From Olly at the dispensary,” said Victor. “The weird guy with the dreads and the weird accent? I was short again and was trying to talk him into letting me have some green for a discount, and he was all, ‘I know a way you can get your hands on some primo bud that won’t require any paper money.’ He gave me the phone number and I called it. I figured it would be some perv looking to get his dick wet, but then that woman answered.”

“Could still be,” said Harrison. “Women can be pervs, too.”

They got to the Burger King and sure enough there was the woman waiting in the alley next to it. She wasn’t hiding in the shadows — she was out on the sidewalk, smoking a cigarette with a long cigarette holder. It was just after 10 PM.

She was tall and pale and had black hair and red lips and they parked and walked right up to her.

“This way, my sons,” she said when they approached. She beckoned to them and they followed. No formal introductions, nothing. Just a crooked finger and a brisk pace into the alley.

She led them back to a small shop down the street. They’d been past it before. It looked like your run-of-the-mill fashion boutique, one of those small-time operations that always makes you wonder how it stays in business. Mannequins in the windows advertising Salvation Army grade women’s clothes, stuff that looks like kids would use it for dress up.

She took them down to the basement. Victor had his knife in his pocket, and he kept his hand on it as they walked. He lead the way, Harrison and Henry trailing behind him. They were uneasy but they’d been in shady situations before.

The first thing they noticed when they got downstairs was a large coffin, open and leaned against the far wall. The rest of the space was taken up by tables on which there were numerous marijuana plants under lamps.

The woman showed them their bags of weed.

Victor cracked one open and sniffed.

“Holy fuck,” he said. “Kim Jong Un. Grown by the man himself in the mountains of North Korea. All the way from there to my nostrils. Goddamn…”

He let his companions each have a sniff.

“My name is Katya,” said the woman. “And I have an addiction. As do we all.”

“What addiction is that?”

“The blood of young men. If I do not consume it, I will turn to dust.”

“Oh,” said all three of the teenagers.

“I must drink from all of you,” said Katya. “And in return, you will walk away with your mind-enhancing herbs.”

“How do we know you’re not just some freak who sucks twinks’ blood?”

“I assure you,” said Katya. “I am not interested in your sex.”

“How old are you?”

“I am four hundred years old, approximately,” said Katya. “I was originally from Russia. I have traveled across Europe and South America to be here.”

“Prove it,” said Victor. “Here.”

He’d brought a small mirror with him.

“Very well,” said Katya. She held the mirror up and looked into it with the boys behind her.

The three of them could only see themselves staring back in the mirror. Katya was gone.

“Behold,” said Katya. “The undead stands before you.”

“Holy fuck,” said the three of them at the same time. Now they were excited.

“Won’t you, like, turn us into vampires if you suck our blood?”

“If I take only a little,” said Katya. “I will not sire you. That’s why I need all three of you. If you’d be more comfortable, you could just hook yourselves up to this IV I have. But it is much more delectable to have the blood warm and flowing off your skin, to tap an artery… the freshest method possible. In fact, if you allow me to do this, I will throw in an ounce of Magnificent Bastard for free.”

Victor and his friends considered.

“Does it hurt?” Harrison wanted to know.

“No,” said Katya. “It is ecstasy.”

They looked at her. Her canines were longer and sharper than normal, but other than that she didn’t look much different than anyone else. She looked like a decent-looking cougar in her early forties, dressed in a white blouse and dark skirt. Her hair and eyes were dark and her cheekbones were high — kind of like an older, paler version of Gal Gadot. She was taller than all three of them.

“I’m just curious to see if this is real,” said Victor. He’d always been the most adventurous of the bunch. “Fuck it. Yeah. Suck my blood. I want to smoke this Kim Jong Un.”

Katya smiled.

“Lay down on this chaise lounge,” she said, beckoning to him. He walked over. Katya had a red psychiatrist’s-looking couch against the wall with the coffin.

“I don’t need to take anything off, do I?” he said.

“Of course not,” said Katya. “You will feel a slight puncture, and then it will be over.”

Victor lay down. Katya cupped the back of his head with her long fingers.

She hissed suddenly and recoiled, pointing at his neck with one hand and shielding her eyes with the other. Victor looked down and noticed he’d worn his crucifix necklace.

“Oh, sorry,” he said, removing it.

The other two guys were surprised at how quick it was. Katya bent down and opened her mouth and positioned it over Victor’s throat. She looked like she was going to give Victor a hickey.

Victor looked at his friends over Katya’s shoulder. His eyes got really wide.

“Holy shit,” he whispered as she drank. There was only slight pain, like a numbed pressure you feel at the dentist’s office.

Then it was Henry’s turn. Then Harrison’s.

Katya gave them baby wipes to clean their necks with.

“My saliva is like that of a spider or a bat,” she said. “You will not have much leakage, and the wounds will close before you even get home.”

She looked much less pale now, very rosy-cheeked and happy.

“Thank you, my sons,” she said. “Come back anytime.”

All of them felt slightly weakened, almost like they were hungover, but other than that the biting hadn’t done much. And the three bags of weed were now firmly clenched in Victor’s fist. He stuffed them down his pants as they walked out.

“Dude, we just got our blood sucked for weed,” said Henry. He rubbed his neck. The wounds were already closing, two small dimples just to the left of his windpipe.

“Did anyone else get a boner while it was happening?” said Victor.

“I got a boner while I was fucking watching it happen,” said Harrison. “Wow.”

They went home and smoked a bowl of the Kim Jong Un and watched Hocus Pocus and The Nightmare Before Christmas.

Everything is a work in progress.

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