"I didn't mean to kill her...." I blurted. The priest held up his hand to me, stopping me mid sentence. "We need to do this as a confession. Anything you say outside the sacrament can be used against you. You know the drill." The priest reached into his pocket and brought out the special rosary, The one without the crucifix, and placed the stole over his neck. He took a long drink of beer and nodded at me to begin.
Most confessions don't take place in a bar; they take place in a church. Unfortunately, I can't step foot in a church. It's holy ground. "Bless me father for I have sinned. It's been a year since my last confession."
A year. A whole year without feeding on a human being. I was doing so good this time. The priest took another drink. I've known him my whole life. He's aged. I haven't aged a day since i was twenty four. That was nineteen years ago, and for nineteen years the priest and I have kept this ritual alive.
"Go on Vincent." He still calls me Vincent. He and my mom. At least she would if she you I was alive, or at least that I'm not entirely dead. Everyone else called me Vinny. But not my mom, or Father Andy O'Riley. He's not Italian, but he's still ok in my book.
"I have committed murder father. I didn't mean to. It just happened."
He wasn't buying it. "Things don't just happen. People don't just commit murder and girls don't just get pregnant. What happened?"
I told him the truth. "I got lonely."
He buried his face in his hands in frustration. I hate disappointing O'Riley. He's the only one who believes in me.
"I got lonely. I went out for a night. Mingling in public, just hanging out in a pub. I wasn't hunting or looking for trouble. I was just sitting at a bar when I saw her, when she saw me. Well, we saw each other I guess. That's when it happened."
"She smiled at me."
Going out was my downfall. I usually keep to myself, trying to protect anyone I could come in contact with. It's so hard to avoid contact, to be solitary.
"Do you always kill people that smile at you?" The priest asked.
He knew I didn't. He knew I didn't like killing. He knew that I don't line being what I am.
I'm a vampire.
I didn't ask to become one, and I still hate what I am after all these years. I've tried everything, but I cant find a cure. Nothing short of a stake or a sunrise can cure me, and the church frowns on suicide.
I started with only feeding on those that deserved it. I am a predator, with all the tools of the trade. I can hear a man beating his wife, smell the sweat on his body, from hundreds of yards. I can hear a child crying after they have been molested. I preyed on those that were preying on others.
The priest would have none of it. I got the old two wrongs don't make a right lecture. He was right, as usual. I fed on bottled blood. The stuff has no life, no vitality. It can sustain me, like bread and water can a convict.
"What happened when she smiled at you Vincent?"
"Honestly?" I asked.
"Yes, unless you want to lie to a priest."
It was time to lay it all out. "It felt good. She noticed me. She liked what she saw and smiled. It made me feel human, and I decided to buy her a drink. I didn't mean to kill her. I didn't want to."
"What did you mean to do Vincent?"
"I meant to feel human! I did feel human. We laughed and talked. We talked about life and family. We talked about the weather and the other people in the bar. It felt good! It felt so good to actually connect with a someone. It made me feel human for the first time in a long time."
"But you aren't human Vincent, at least not entirely human, I don't think. How did she die?"
This was going to be hard. I hate this part of confession. "She asked me what I do. I knew what she meant. She wanted to know what I did for a living. That meant she was interested. I caught myself, tried to stop it. It was like taking a shot to the gut father. I know what I do for a living. I know what I am."
"What did you tell her?"
"I told her the truth.i told her I kill people. I wanted to scare her away. But...."
"She looked up. That's what killed her, she in surprise and her gaze met mine. I really didn't mean for that to happen. Once he eyes met mine she was in my power, my thrall. Her life was in my hands, and I took it. She was defenseless. We walked outside hand in hand; her hand was so warm. I killed her behind the pub. I drank her blood, and she didn't even know to be afraid."
"What do you want from me Vincent?"
"I'm not sure any more. When it started I came to you because that when catholic kids do when they screw up. I knew you couldn't turn me in, and I needed to square what I was with God."
"And now?" The priest asked.
"Because you listen, and don't judge me. You give me hope."
"There is still hope Vincent."
"How do you know?" I asked. The priest caught me off guard with his answer.
The priest took my hand in his "Because you feel guilt. That means you have humanity. You may be a vampire Vincent, you may not be human, but you have humanity. As long as that spark of the old Vincent is still there I can't give up on you. If you ever lose it, I'll hunt you down myself. Until then, I believe you can be redeemed."
He finished his beer and gave me absolution. There was no penance. No penance could make up for what I do. No punishment could be worse than the hell I feel every day. The priest gave me absolution, and then he finished his beer and stood to leave.
"See you next time Vincent." He said in parting, and headed for the door.
Yeah father, next time.
The Confession by Bryan L Dekker,is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.
Based on a work at bryanldekker.blogspot.com.
Based on a work at bryanldekker.blogspot.com.