So...you want to talk about it?

Submitted into Contest #65 in response to: Write about a vampire or werewolf who moves into a quiet suburban neighborhood.... view prompt

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Romance Thriller Fiction

Dinah placed the trash cans at the curb, hoping to catch a glimpse at the new neighbor. He ducked back inside before she got the chance. “Hmm,”

Dinah!” The other neighbor’s voice asked her to come over. Joan the town gossip saw Dinah’s look of disappointment from a mile away. 

Dinah came over. Joan was sweet enough, a little annoying but she’s the type of lady that would fix your hair after a crying session and call you pretty. Buy you chocolate and tell you to eat the whole thing because you deserve it. “What’s the tea, Joan?” She said, knowing she would have no clue what she was saying. 

“Saw you spying on the neighbor boy,” Joan’s voice got sing-song. 

“Uh-huh,” Dinah leaned against the fence, brushing some of her short hair back. “I just like the mystery.” She offered sarcastically. 

“I heard from Rebecca who heard from Cece who heard from her boss that his name is Colin. He likes that old book store, sushi, and the dog park. Nobody knows what he does for a living.”

“Interesting.” She offered. “You talked to him yet?”

“Not yet, tried to catch him at the dog park but he was petting a pair of dogs. His voice was so soft.”

Dinah smiled again, “I got bread in the oven, see you later Joan.”

“Call me later!”

“Of course.” Dinah waved, entering the house. It smelled like her herb bread, which made her feel so much better. She gathered her bread, studied it for a moment, got her knife, and cut into it. The pain of the heat was for the weak, bread was forever. She heard a little knock at the door once she took her first bite, feeling the pure vexation of it all. It was probably just Joan, trying to tell her more. “You do not interrupt bread time Joan-” She opened the door and saw Colin now standing there. He was holding a package, smiling shyly. Dinah, mouth still full of bread, slowly chewed and swallowed. “Hey.”

“Uh hi, nice to meet you...”

“Dinah. And you’re Colin?”

“Yeah, that’s me,”

“And how can I help you, Colin?” She offered, leaning on the door, taking another bite.

“I think they mixed up, I got your package.” He said extending it to her. “I just wanted to make sure you got it.”

“You’re sweet.” She placed the bread into her mouth while she took the package, setting it down inside her corridor. Her eyes caught gauze at his leg, still wrapped, “You good?”

“How do you mean? Oh! That. Yeah, I got into a bad accident on my bike.”

“You ride? I have a skateboard.”

“I don’t have the coordination for it.” Colin offered nicely. “Uh, anyway, I’m sorry I interrupted bread time.”

She snorted, “Don’t worry about it. Nice to meet you.”

“Nice to meet you too.” He said as began stepping back to leave the porch. He stumbled, waving to show he had not fallen. She shut the door, laughing softly. A second later, the door was knocked on again. She went over, opening it again, finding Colin again.

“Would you like to go out with me?”

“Sure, why not?”

“Really?”

“Yeah, you’re cute and life is short.” Dinah agreed. 

“Okay, uh, tomorrow?”

“Tomorrow, you want dinner?”

“Yeah! Do you, want my number?”

“As long as you give me yours.”

……………………………………………………………………………………………

A week after their first date, Colin canceled. She was disappointed, but let it go. She liked him. The entail she had received was correct. He was a regular at Lilith’s repurposed books, enjoyed sushi, and wanted a dog more than anything. Sadly, he had just got his job as a bank teller. “I got the house from inheritance.” He offered a little awkwardly. “Sorry, that’s a little sad.”

“It happens. It’s what life is.” She smiled.

He walked her home, and they talked on the phone for hours soon after. Joan watched Dinah laugh and sing in her yard as she picked her herb garden. 

Another week passed and Dinah got worried. Despite all their talking and her clear feelings, this seemed….weird. She made a batch of braided berry bread and walked over to Colin’s. Colin threw open the door just as she knocked, shocking them both. “Hey,” Colin was sweating up a storm, thick blonde hair matted on his forehead, stirring some feelings in Dinah’s stomach. 

“He..” She cleared her throat. “Hey, you….good?”

“No...Yeah! Yeah, I just did a workout.” He leaned on the door, slowly breathing in and calming down. 

“You might need to adjust there dude. You look wrecked.”

He snorted, “Um, listen, I’m a pig right now but, do you want to come in? I can be ready for you in like...fifteen minutes.”

Okay,” Dinah replied. He leads her to the living room, small but comfortable. She smiled and sat down the bread on the coffee table. He excused himself and said he’d be right back. He ran off to his room and the shower. Dinah, now too nervous to stay still, got up and began looking around. She looked at his bookshelf, seeing he seemed really into cryptids. Books about monsters and ghosts were littered with normal self-help and hardback comics. ‘Well,’ Dinah thought. ‘That’s not the weirdest thing, I believe in Mothman….if he starts talking about Scientology I’m dumping him.’ She went to the walls, seeing pictures. One of him with his parents all standing beside a building in Germany. Another where they had gone hiking in Scotland. He looked just like his dad, she noted. Dinah walked away, feeling her socked toes touching something weird on the floor. She looked down, seeing gashes on the wood. It looked almost like an animal had bore its nails into the wood, then pulled down causing the wood to ripple. ‘Well….that’s weird.’ She offered. Dinah shrugged, returning to the couch, sitting down. She got a news alert on her phone, seeing a headline of a smashed car up the block. The house and people had been untouched, but the lawn was destroyed. The mailbox looked like an animal had taken a chunk of it. Now that was really odd.

“Dinah,” Colin returned, fully dressed in a nice clean t-shirt and shorts. His legs looked shaved, and a little cut from a razor. “Sorry I kept you waiting.”

“Are you….sure you’re okay?” She asked, studying him. Clean as he was, he did seem a little pale. She touched his forehead with the back of her hand, feeling he was a little hot. But he did just come from a shower. 

“Yeah, I’m okay! I’m sorry-”

“Don’t be sorry you stupid.” She said clearly lovingly. 

“But I am sorry! I’m canceled twice and now I’m being weird.”

“Yeah, everyone is weird sometimes, I’m not mad.”

“I’m glad you’re not!” He offered, nicely. 

They both relaxed a little bit, cutting into bread, and just talked on the couch. They dove deeper, and Dinah told him to tell her something completely honest. “What do you mean?”

“Radical honesty. The act of saying something you wouldn’t normally say because you were too scared too.”

“Oh….well, I’m really into monsters?”

“Boooo! So I am, you coward!”

“Okay! Okay,” He laughed. “This is really embarrassing...but...I secretly like the idea of being abducted by aliens. I mean, I think being abducted is literally the dumbest thing on the planet but you know…...was that too much?”

“That’s the fifth oddest thing I’ve ever heard on a date.”

“What’s the first thing?” He asked, completely bewildered, a wide smile on his face.

“If I tell you, you’ll judge my taste in men.”

“I won’t judge.” He told her. “I know you won’t judge my taste in men.”

She snorted, “I feel like you like jocks. Or like one of those alpha bros.”

Absolutely not, but I don’t like the terms like alpha or omega or beta or any of that.”

“I know why I don’t like it, but you tell me why you don’t,” Dinah said, smiling.

“Okay, so besides the fact that the study was discredited by the same guy who did the study,” Colin began, clearly passioned by it. “There’s so much wrong with the identity of alphas and betas and placing them on people! Like, have you ever met someone that takes that stuff seriously? They’re the worst kind of person, and they have no understanding of how people, especially women, communicate and live!”

“Will you go steady with me?”

What?”

“You heard me,” She smiled. “After hearing that, I think I’d like to date you.”

Oh,” Colin looked really excited for a moment, but his eyes dimmed. “I like you a lot. But...I’m not ready yet.”

“Oh, that’s okay. I respect that.”

“It’s not you, I promise-”

She placed one finger over his lips, silencing him. “It. Is. Okay. Take all the time you need.”

He smiled, taking the hand and kissed it. “Thank you.”

“Now, please keep going with that rant.”

………………………………………………………………………………………………

“Listen,” Joan started again as Dinah stretched for a run. “If he doesn’t want to go steady after another week, you’re gone!”

“I’m gone,” Dinah agreed. “For the record, I think he’s just nervous. Not stringing me along.”

“Yeah, all of them are nervous in the beginning.” She replied, rolling her eyes. “He seems nice enough. Are you sure about this one?”

“Completely.”

“Alright, alright,” Joan sighed. “You’ll text me when you get back home right?”

“Always do.”

“Got your taser?”

“Uh-huh,” She held it up. 

“Alright, let me get back to all this. If I find out what dog littered trash all over my lawn I’m gonna throw a fit.”

“Throw one for me too, it stomped on my dill,” Dinah told her as she got on the sidewalk. They waved as the other went their separate ways. Dinah liked to run, she usually did at the twilight hour. Her neighborhood was safe enough for her, she usually dealt with creeps when she went to the gym. Even still, she carried her taser and stuck close to the house. She made it a couple of miles before the sunset. She stopped for a moment, bending down to pet the local cat who did not really belong to anyone. Dinah called him Bean. She caught the sound of something just past her eye line, unnerving her. ‘Nope.’ She turned around and began to head back home. She heard shuffling behind her, and that only encouraged her running. She stopped for a moment, wondering if she was just being paranoid. There was a deep guttural growl echoing behind her. Dinah booked it to her lawn, grabbing her phone to call 911. By the time she reached the porch, she collapsed on top of it, feeling the adrenaline had not left. She studied the phone, breathing in as deeply as she could, trying to relax. She scanned the street, finding nothing there, it was peaceful and safe. The sounds of the crickets helped considerably. She took a deep breath, feeling some of her senses relax. She slowly got up, still shaky, and went to her porch and clicked on the lights. A large beast stood at the base of her lawn. A giant wolf, standing on his hind legs, with massively thick fur ruffled up in alertness. Dinah blinked, trying to comprehend the sight in front of her. He looked over at her, blinking. He was just as confused as she was. Dinah didn’t move, didn’t scream, didn’t even twitch. She just stared. The beast, now fully grasping the situation, slowly took a deep step back. It took another step, still looking at her. Dinah finally took a breath, seeing she had held it in. The creature bent down, turning into something like a dog, ears bending back and his tail tucked in. She didn’t want to step towards him but she did. She resisted every urge but kept going. He trembled, sitting down just like a dog, bowing to her extended hand. When she touched his head, she felt the fluff and it seemed almost endless. “What…..” She felt him sniff her hand, whining softly. She slowly backed up after a minute, hands behind herself. Dinah slowly went to her porch again, opening the door, and went inside. She fell down face-first into the living room and passed out.

……………………………………………………………………………………………………

When Dinah opened her eyes, she felt all of her body awaken from her remembering of the last night. ‘I had to have been dreaming that. I had to. There’s no way that happened,” She turned over and looked at her phone which was safely next to her. She picked it up and called Joan immediately. “Joan?”

Where are you? Are you okay?”

“I’m okay. What time is it?’

“It’s 4 am, are you at home?”

“Yeah, yeah. I’m in my living room, I fell out. Um, I’m gonna go to the hospital in a second, I’ll call you later.” She clicked and slowly sat up. She went to her room, took a few deep breathes, and looked into the garden finding a naked Colin standing there. She screamed in shock, running to the windows and opened them. “Colin?”

“You’re okay!” He exclaimed.

“You...I mean….hang on a second.” She went back inside, grabbing a pair of sweatpants and a shirt, and tossed them at him. He thanked her and slipped them on before they continued. “Can you tell me something?”

“Yeah.”

“Were you the...I mean, did I see you last night?”

“Ye...yeah.”

“Was that really you?”

“Yeah.” He said softly, hands behind himself.

“Okay, okay, okay.” She rubbed her face. “Um, do you want to come in?”

“Are you sure?”

“I’m sure.”

He went to the back door and she let him in. She flicked on more lights, going to the kitchen, found her single bottle of whiskey, and took a shot of it straight from the bottle. She set it down and looked at him directly, “Alright….I’m ready. No, no, I’m not ready, but….okay. I’m ready.” She decided.

“I’m a werewolf.”

“Yup got that. How did that happen?”

“I was born that way.”

“Alright...and do you….I mean, do you eat people?”

“No, deer and turkeys and pigs and stuff.”

“I’m sorry, that was probably really rude.”

“No, it’s okay. That’s a question we get asked a lot. Werewolves, I mean.” She took another sip of whiskey, calming down considerably. “This is kinda why I didn’t want to go steady yet.”

“Yeah, I won’t either.” She offered, sliding the alcohol to him. He took it, taking a little sip. 

“Are you okay?”

“Well, I thought I was dreaming, then I woke up and you were there and I was a little sick.”

“It’s okay if you don’t want to see me again.”

“I didn’t say that.” His eyes got wide from her words, feeling as confused as she was. “I know. I think I genuinely like you that much.”

“I’m...glad.”

“Good, give that back.” He handed it to her and she drank another sip. “I only bought this for chocolate whiskey cake, you now owe me whiskey cake.”

“I’ll get you as much as you want.” He offered brightly.

“Good….do you, want to talk about it?”

“Only if you want to.”

“I would love too.”

October 24, 2020 20:32

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3 comments

☆ Ariadne ☆
00:15 Oct 25, 2020

Aww. Adorable. I'm glad she gave Colin a chance. This line had me laughing: “I heard from Rebecca who heard from Cece who heard from her boss that his name is Colin. He likes that old book store, sushi, and the dog park. Nobody knows what he does for a living.” I suggest breaking up this paragraph: “Throw one for me too, it stomped on my dill,” Dinah told her as she got on the sidewalk. They waved as the other went their separate ways. ... There's more but I don't want the comment to be too long. Anyway, well done! Mind checking out ...

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Megan Faith
14:48 Oct 25, 2020

Aww, thanks so much for liking it! Thanks for pointing out that break, my editing brain is lagging sometimes. Please, feel free to tell me more!

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☆ Ariadne ☆
19:23 Oct 25, 2020

No, no, I meant that the paragraph was longer and I didn't want the comment to be too long. No other mistakes, at least, not that I could find! :)

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