Scent Notes: Dark, rich cherry and rosewoods, osmanthus, fresh blood.
It had been several months since Amanda had moved in with Claudius, and therefore with Sylvia, Giorgio, and Louisa, since they all lived in the same house. The other three vampires were at the end of their ropes, however. It had turned into nothing but the two of them sucking face in the common areas at all hours of the night, Amanda making human food that looked horrifying (what was a Jello mold and why would it be filled with meat and fruit?), and endless blasting of horrible music from their shared Spotify account. It was nice that Claudius was finally advancing with the times, though. His clothing style was no longer from the 17th century (albeit still completely random and mismatched); he understood their references to TV shows now; he was even looking into doing some kind of computer coding class as Amanda says, “they’re all vampires.” Louisa was thrilled. “He can finally contribute to the costs of the synthetic blood,” she said gleefully. At that moment, Claudius and Amanda walked into the room.
“We have found a new place to live, just the two of us,” he said. “They call it an approchement, I believe.” “No honey, they call it an apartment. We found an apartment!” she said gleefully. “This place is fine and whatever but it’s damp and I swear the walls are crumbling. I wake up covered in bits of gravel every night.” “Yes, that’s why we live here; it’s part of the charm!” Giorgio said. “We’re traditional and historic in this castle; we couldn’t live in a modern apartment building. All those sleek lines everywhere, not one place to hide a body. Preposterous!” Sylvia waved her hand as if waving the thought away. “It’s fine. I tire of hearing Nickelback on repeat. Get on out of here. And take your goblets with you,” she said, kicking one across the floor of the library to his feet. “I’m tired of tripping over them after you two have stayed up all day during the playing of your role games.” “It’s fine, we will be gone by the end of the week,” Claudius announced.
Sure enough, the pair were gone at the end of next week, forcing Giorgio, Sylvia, and Louisa to find another roommate. “It will be wonderful to have some fresh blood around the house,” Louisa said. “Surely many people are looking for new places to live right now, yes? Let us put out feelers to our friends and see who’s available.” Sylvia made a post to her Facebite page to see if anyone was looking for a place to live. Sure enough, she had several bites within the hour. “Looks like we’ll be hosting people to find a new roommate,” Sylvia said.
Two weeks later, after they had moved out, a steady stream of otherworldly creatures came through the front door. Surprisingly, that included Claudius and Amanda. “Why are you two here?” Louisa asked. “We want to see if the people trying to take our space are cool enough for it or not,” Amanda said. Claudius agreed. “After all, we’ll still be over all the time to hang out with you guys. You’re all my homies.” Giorgio rolled his eyes and Sylvia muttered a quick “what the fuck” under her breath. They’d already seen several candidates; none had been universally accepted. Giorgio maintained the woman Sylvia and Louisa liked “smelled like the undead,” and when they reminded him that’s because she was a zombie, he had a conniption. There’d been several other vampires, most of whom had a feud with at least one if not all three of them, but were in a bind looking for a new place to leave their coffin. The doorbell rang, and Sylvia sprang up to answer it. She greeted the handsome, hirsute man at the door with, “Hi, please come in, and please ignore the Nickelback that just started playing. We don’t normally listen to that.” “Oh, that’s cool, I LOVE Nickelback!” he said, and Sylvia shut the door in his face. He knocked immediately, and she opened the door back up. “If you live here: no shitty music,” she said. He nodded quickly. “It’s fine, I’ll wear headphones,” he said cautiously, stepping inside into the foyer. She sighed and motioned for him to follow her down the hallway to the undead room (they stopped calling it a living room ages ago).
“This place is wicked cool,” he said. “Reminds me of an ancient castle or something. Sick. I love it.” She led him into the room and introduced everyone. “Except, wait, what’s your name?” Sylvia asked. “Greg,” he said. “Just Greg.” “Welcome, Greg,” Giorgio said. “Tell us all about yourself.” “Well, I’m 35 years old, and I work in IT for a local business. I keep to myself and I wear headphones most of the time. I’ve heard you all hate Nickelback but I promise to only listen to them in my room on my headphones. I’m a big fan of action and horror movies.” Claudius yawned like he was the most boring man in the world, but Amanda was rapt with attention. “We like all the same things!” she said. “Oh, Amanda, who cares? I’m right here, darling,” Claudius said, trying to draw her closer. Amanda reluctantly snuggled back next to him on the tiny chair they were sharing. “Are you also a vampire?” she asked. “Me? Oh, no, no. I mean, no disrespect,” he said, looking around at everyone in the room. “You’re super cool and all, but, that’s not really my scene.” Amanda looked disappointed; the other vampires perked up. A human? VERY fresh blood in the house, indeed. Fantastic. Giorgio was about to ask a question when Greg interrupted. “I know this is going to be controversial as my bloodline has a bad history with vampires, but I’m actually a werewolf.”
Immediately, the vampires screamed and began cursing in ancient tongues. Greg threw his hands up and pulled his headphones out of his bag; they were noise-cancelling, so he couldn’t hear them and be hurt by their words. “I’m so sorry, I’ll leave, I’ll get out right now,” he said, picking up his bag and heading into the hallway. Amanda ran after him, grabbing his arm and turning him around. “I have an apartment. Come live with me,” she said. Greg took off his headphones. “But, I thought you were with that weird old vampire dude in the Phish shirt and harem pants and velvet cloak?” “Oh, that’s over. I’m way into werewolves now.”
Claudius came into the hallway. “My love! You can’t leave me for this disgusting creature! You can be with me! I can make you immortal. We can rule the world!” Giorgio, Sylvia, and Louisa were all behind Claudius in the hallway now, observing. Amanda turned around and rolled her eyes at Claudius. “Look, you were fun for a while, but I have no interest in immortality, and drinking blood is gross. Even synthetic blood. I’m gonna go hook up with the younger, hotter werewolf. Bye.” They walked out the front door, leaving the stunned vampires in their wake. Claudius stood in a stupor. Giorgio, Louisa, and Sylvia started laughing uncontrollably, tears rolling down their faces. Sylvia actually fell on the ground, hitting it with her fist. “Oh man, she left you for a werewolf?!” Giorgio said, wiping tears off his cheeks. “That’s so ridiculous!” Louisa added. Claudius snapped out of his stupor and tore off the clothing he was wearing. “Screw this modern nonsense!” he shouted. “I am reverting to my traditional vampire ways!” He stormed down the hallway to his bedroom in just his cape. The other vampires just kept laughing as he slammed the door. “I suppose we don’t need a new roommate anymore, huh?” Louisa asked. Moments later, the doorbell rang. “No, but I suspect Claudius could use some fresh blood,” Giorgio said, getting up to answer the door.
Sure enough, a young woman was on the threshold. “Is, uh, is this the house advertising for a roommate?” she asked tentatively. The door to Claudius’s room sprang open, and he marched down the hallway naked in his cape, his fangs bared. The woman ran away into the night, screaming about naked vampires. “Well, no fresh blood, I guess. Who’s up for a synthetic blood and cognac cocktail? I’ve been working on my recipe; I call it a ‘Bloody Corpse,'” said Giorgio. The vampires headed back into the library for cocktails and a Scrabble tournament, and ignored the doorbell for the rest of the night.
Scent Notes: Dark, rich cherry and rosewoods, osmanthus, fresh blood.