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They're longer, sweeter, and yet so very fast. Too fast I think. I experience those moments every single day, often more than once. Yeah, sometimes it sucks. Sometimes the life that's ending is so full of goodness, so perfect in every way that it seems wrong for it to just stop, to extinguish that light which is pathetically rare in this place. But, when the time comes, who am I to say they made the wrong choice? I'm just doing what I was made to do. Don't get me wrong, it's not always like that. Often it's very much a gift to put that fire out. It's a treat, a joy, an exquisitely pleasurable experience that I must admit, I occasionally draw out a little longer than a good conscience allows. Hey, everyone's gotta have a reason to keep doing what they do. Mine is prolonging those times where the person doesn't deserve life. Tonight is one of those times. Larry's had a good, long run. I know he's only 43, but when you pack what Larry's packed into those years, well, you've overachieved and spent your time. Kind of like when you buy a new car and you love it and it's an awesome, perfect; a top of the line ride. Shit, that car is what everyone who is anyone wants to drive. Fuel efficient, comfortable, leather interior, a motor that hums like a choir of angels and a body that attracts every female within a fifty mile radius. So you drive that car as much as you can. You drive it to the corner store, even though the corner store is only two doors down. You'd live in that car if you could. But one day, before the three year warranty is up, the damn thing starts having problems. Stalls out, the engine smokes, the leather interior is looking shoddy, so you take it in and the guy says, "Yeah, three years or a hundred thousand miles you dope." You look at the odometer and you read "110, 054". You drove the life right out of that car. Larry drove the life right out of his life. I follow him to his usual haunts, down by where all the young girls go to make a little cash. And that's not so terrible. I mean, the girls need to earn in order to eat and guys like Larry are helping them do that. Sometimes a girl is far older than years can measure, so that's not my issue with Larry. No, I let him have his last hurrah with a blond who looks about seventeen but I can't be sure. I lost the ability to identify human years long ago. Then Larry leaves the girl on the corner, tucking a wad of bills into her bra and straightening her tiny skirt. I follow him home, which is where Larry does the things that make him a prime target for a creature like me. He goes inside and I keep to the shadows, moving along the side of the house, in the darkness between the patio and the garage. I don't exist so I can't be seen. You know how it goes.
The lights go on upstairs and I think I should probably make my move before he enters the room at the end of the hall. Spare the poor kid another visit from her stepdad. You'd think the blond would be enough, but sadly Larry is greedy. So I kick over the metal trash can next to the house. Man those things make a racket. In moments out comes Larry, baseball bat in hand. How cute. He thinks it's the neighbor's cat. He comes around the side of the house and Larry encounters me. I smile, "Good evening, Larry." "Who are you?" he tightens his grip on the bat. Poor Larry. "You've been a naughty boy, Larry." "Get outta here." he raises the bat and I laugh.They hate it when I laugh. "No, I can't go just yet. It's time, Larry." He swings, but I'm far too good at this. His neck is between my teeth before the bat even makes a full arc and it clatters to the ground. He might be one of the foulest humans on this Earth, but his blood is hot and sweet quenching my thirst and taming the hunger that is always within me. Sadly, Larry doesn't even struggle. Oh well, sometimes it's like that. His heart stops and I let him fall to the ground, next to the trash can. His head crushes an empty box of Cheerios. He should recycle. No, we don't really hide our bites. We don't have to. The marks fade and by morrning, it will appear as though Larry had some sort of stroke whatever it is that is the popular reason for humans to just up and die. I walk to the end of the driveway, glancing at the house as I step onto the sidewalk. The light is on upstairs and I pause. A small face appears in the window. So innocent are those big green eyes. I blow her a kiss. She puts a tiny hand to her mouth and backs away from my sight. I'll check on her in a few years. Now, the sun is rising and I have to go. What? Did you think I was Death? Come now, you're too old to believe in fairy tales.