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An interview to remember
The man in the suit –James C. Decker, V.P. as his shiny gold nameplate said- shuffled through a file on his desk, turning the pages casually. It was probably my file. If it wasn’t then Mr. James C. Decker, V.P. was being extremely rude.
He was clean shaven and his closely cut blonde hair was just about as perfect as it gets. His suit was dark gray and wrinkle-free, his tie a subdued shade of green that kind of matched his eyes. I would have called him handsome had he not been the kind of person that had put me off humans all together. His type tasted… sterile. They ate tofu and drank soy milk, ran five miles every morning, only drank one martini (dry, shaken and not stirred) a day, and didn’t even smoke.
Excuse the metaphor, but it’s like eating an unseasoned piece of beef. It doesn’t taste bad, exactly, but it’s just so boring. It’s like why am I wasting my time on this when I can get a perfectly good drug addict downtown?
When Mr. James C. Decker, V.P. raised his eyebrows and did a double take I knew for certain he was reading my file. He looked at me for a second before glancing once more at the papers, clearing his throat as he closed it and set it down on his immaculate glass desk.
“So, Miss Crewe, you’ve come to us for a job correct?”
“Yes.” I hoped he wasn’t going to start trying to pronounce my first name. Everyone always butchered it, and it’s such a nice Welsh name too.
“From what I understand you wish to be a, ah, vampire hunter,” Mr. James C. Decker, V.P. said delicately, placing his fingertips together on the desk. Classic bigwig move. It seemed a little out of place next to the logo of the company, which was a sharpened wooden stake and an old-school Colt 45 forming an ‘X’ on a white background.
“That’s correct,” I answered, using my best no-nonsense business voice. It was neutral and steady and indifferent all at the same time. To go with it I had on my only suit, a simple black pinstriped skirt and matching jacket, with a pale blue button-down underneath. Not my favorite thing, but the shoes definitely were; they were black and white peep-toe pumps, with a small bow on the toe. They looked kind of vintage except for the fact that they were shiny patent leather.
“And you yourself are a vampire.” Incredulity was plain in his voice, as well as in his quirked right eyebrow.
I inclined my head in what I hoped was a regal nod.
Mr. James C. Decker, V.P. cleared his throat again, opening the file briefly before closing it once more. He was obviously at a loss here, so I decided to fill in the blanks for him. “Mr. Decker, it’s been over twenty years since I last had a taste of human blood. I assure you it would not interfere with the task at hand, whatever it may be.” I was careful not to emphasize the ‘human’ part too much. Best not rush into things too fast.
“Furthermore, I believe my heightened senses and physical stamina could serve you well. What other firm could boast such an advantage?” I crossed my legs and sat back a little, folding my hands in my lap. I didn’t once look away from his eyes and he seemed to get a little uncomfortable.
“Your argument is sound, Miss Crewe,” Mr. James C. Decker, V.P. said after a pause, placing his hands flat on his desk on either side of my file. “And your résumé is quite impressive, but you must understand that this is a very unusual proposal. What proof do I have that you aren’t just a saboteur sent to gum up the works? Or perhaps you are simply here for free meal without too many suspicions.”
I shifted forward, uncrossing my legs to place my feet flat on the floor. “I am here for a free meal, Mr. Decker. Simply put, I’m a cannibal among cannibals.” Mr. James C. Decker, V.P. blinked in surprise, leaning back as his hand traveled to the intercom button on his phone.
“I’m afraid I don’t see your meaning.” To his credit his voice was still calm and precise.
“You understand, Mr. Decker, that after I gave up human blood I still needed to find a way to sustain myself. Most vampires who do so content themselves with animal blood, but I’ve found a way that is more beneficial to both me and to the human race in general.” I paused for dramatic effect, placing my fingertips together in front of me in much the same way as my interviewer had.
“I feed on the blood of my vampire kin. You’ll have to excuse me for being blunt, but there is no other good way to explain it.” I leaned back again and allowed a small, self-satisfied smirk to settle on my berry-painted lips.
Mr. James C. Decker, V.P. stared at me blankly for a moment before the information seemed to sink it. “Let me get this straight –and please, don’t hesitate to correct me if I’m wrong Miss Crewe; you have given up human flesh in exchange for that of other vampires,” he said, and at my nod he seemed to straighten up a little.
“But studies show…” he began, and with considerable annoyance I interrupted him, proper etiquette be damned.
“Studies by vampires,” I said harshly. “Vampires who wish to keep themselves from getting exterminated as they slowly drain the earth of its human occupants. They may conduct these ‘experiments’ in the name of ‘science,’ but it’s all propaganda. Don’t believe everything you read, Mr. Decker.”
“By that same logic, then, why should I believe you?” The man raised his eyebrows. He had a point, a good one, and he knew it.
“You shouldn’t,” I stated, for there really wasn’t anything I could say. “But there are people –human and vampire- who will vouch for me.” I tilted my head to one side and waited for his answer.
“Do you have a list? Names, telephone numbers, addresses…?”
Ha. This guy wanted me on his side of the supernatural hunting economy- that was plainly obvious now. He would have kicked me out by now if he didn’t. “Of course,” I answered, opening my purse (black and boring, just like the rest of my outfit) and bringing out a folded piece of paper. I’d written my friends’ and former employers’ information on it beforehand, knowing it would be needed eventually. If this hadn’t gone well I would have just taken it to the next firm and the next until I found one that would take me.
Mr. James C. Decker, V.P. took it from my hand gingerly and opened it up, giving the list a cursory glance before slipping it inside my file. “Very good, Miss Crewe. We’ll get back to you with our decision as soon as possible.” He stood and gestured for me to do the same, following me to the door.
“Thank you Mr. Decker. I look forward to our next meeting.” Where we’ll be discussing my pay and legal needs. Grinning, I exited the office. Getting paid to eat; what a nice twist that would be.