I had a glass of Snapple in one hand and a tattered paperback in the other.
“You really do love it out here, don’t you?” asked Ana, my beautiful friend who was both a Vampire and the owner of the coolest used bookstore in Bangor.
She was curled up in her chair with a book, and a bag filled with old paperbacks rested at her feet.
“This is my favorite part of the house,” I admitted as I put down my book and looked over at her with a smile. “When we were looking for a place, I told J that my only requirement was that it had an awesome porch. I wanted to be able to sit out on it and write, read, and relax.”
“And spend time with her, of course,” Ana added with a chuckle.
“But, of course,” I answered with a wink.
Being friends with a gorgeous Vampire, who owned a bookstore and drained books of every last ounce of entertainment, made for lots of quiet weekends together spent reading on the porch. That made me very happy.
“Do you ever miss her?” Ana asked as she sipped her wine. Red, of course.
“No,” I said with a shrug. “I’m just glad she was an architect, who had great taste in houses because it would’ve sucked if she’d just left me with a broken heart. This porch makes up for all the bad stuff.”
Her ability to devour a book so quickly was both impressive and intimidating.
“I know some people refer to exes as blood suckers, but I’d never insult Vampires that way,” I joked.
Ana laughed and pushed her big glasses back up on the bridge of her nose.
“Bad breakups can give us poor Vamps a bad name,” she agreed. “How was your run?”
Ana was on a running kick, too, which I found a little odd since Vampires were immortal, but I guess they needed to do something to pass the time.
“I did four and a quarter miles,” I informed her as I raised my legs to show off the shapely muscles that had formed due to all my recent running. “It got a little rough on the last hill, but I pushed my way through.”
“You always do,” she pointed out with a smile. “Making it over that last hill must be your favorite part of your run.”
I shook my head in disagreement and took a long sip of my Snapple before I answered.
“Actually, my favorite part of every run is the time I spend cooling down here on the porch once I’m done,” I explained. “I’m feeling my runner’s high as an amazing sense of accomplishment washes over me. I just put my legs up and decompress. It’s always so peaceful on this street. It might be my favorite time of entire the day.”
“Basking in the afterglow,” Ana added. “You’re pretty cool for a mortal, Austin. I’m glad we decided to be friends.”
She held out her wineglass, and I quickly extended my glass of Snapple for a toast.
“Here’s to Vampires and humans learning to place nice together!” I suggested.
Ana tapped my glass. “If you ever need me to pay your ex-wife a visit, just let me know.
She bared her fangs for just a moment, and was then overcome with a fit of giggling.
Vampires were weird, but when they were as pretty as Ana, you learned to put up with it.