Tuesday 1 March 2011

The early days

It was so difficult at first. I was thirsty all the time, so much so that it hurt. My throat burned until I drank blood.
“You must come to my surgery, every morning, early,” said Talbot. “And every evening, after hours.”
The sachets of human blood he gave helped. I gulped down three or four every morning and every evening. It stopped the burn until about two hours before the next feed. Then it was absolute torture.
“You must keep away from people when you get the burn,” said Talbot. “If you get desperate, you can try an animal. Nobody’s pet, mind. And bury the evidence of anything you kill.”
The burn started early one day after school. I was sitting next to Melissa on the bus. I could smell her flesh. All I could do was stare at the whiteness of her neck and imagine my fangs sinking into it and the blood spurting out. And I imagined it gliding down my throat and the burn subsiding.
“Don’t look at people with hungry eyes,” Talbot said. “For then your eyes will give away what you are.”
I remembered his words just in time. Melissa turned to me. “Jesus, you’re scaring me Fyonah,” she said. “The way you’re looking at me.”
The mention of the so-called son of God was enough to make me shudder and to make the burn disappear. But that only lasted seconds and then the ache in my throat was back.
I focussed on the bag she had on her lap. It was full of books and I thought of the homework we’d been given and how I’d have all night to do it once I’d been to Talbot. I wish I could have checked my eyes to see whether they were still glowing. Impossible of course. We have no reflections.
“You’ll have to fool people that you’re eating,” said Talbot. “And you’ll have to be quiet at night. Keep away from mirrors.”
I learnt to manage that. I became skilled at stuffing my mouth with food and emptying it later. I learnt to creep about softer than a kitten. And gradually I got used to my new strength.
“Touch everything as if it is made of egg-shells and be as gentle with people as if they were babies,” he said.
I learnt it all, gradually. There was just one thing: I could not get used to the intense feelings I now had for Talbot. I wanted him to touch me again, that way. I wanted to feel again the excitement of his frenzied feeding, only have the excitement be for something else. I wanted him to need me.
But he remained forever the caring family doctor.

Tuesday 18 January 2011


You see, Talbot saw me go into the alley. He called me. I couldn’t resist going back to see him. What might happen? Me all on my own and the best-looking doctor ever. Better than those lanky losers from the boys’ school.

They came at me from behind. I didn’t see them. I didn’t hear them. They were just suddenly there. They were pawing at me, pulling at my clothes and pushing me. One of them pinned up against the wall.
Then Talbot was there. I couldn’t figure out at first how he got there so quickly. I know now, of course.
But he was too late.

One of them had banged my head really hard against the wall.
It’s all a bit hazy, but I do remember their faces as they saw Talbot arriving. They screamed and they ran.
Talbot was holding me.
“No,” I heard him whisper. “No!”
He screamed. I’ve never heard anything like it. It sounded inhuman.
There was a bright light shining above him. It seemed to be pulling me towards it. I knew I was dying.
“You can save me,” I said. “You’re a doctor.”
“There’s nothing that 21st century medicine can do to save you,” he said. “Nothing in my power as a doctor.”
“Please,” I begged.
I didn’t want to die. They say your whole life flashes in front of you when you’re dying. Mine did. Though not the life I’d had, as you might imagine, but the life I still wanted to have.
“I don’t want to die,” I mumbled.
“I can do something,” he said, his voice all husky.
I was getting sleepy. But I still knew: I wanted to live.
“You can still live here. It won’t be quite the same. You won’t be the same at all. There’ll be some pain.”
“Please let me live,” I whispered.

It wasn’t like they say in all the books. How can I describe it? It was a bit like making love. As he bit into my neck, I felt a jolt of energy and then as he feasted I actually felt all the pain they’d given me melting away and being replaced by a strange energy. I felt lighter and stronger as he fed.
He was excited. How a man gets excited when he’s with a woman I thought then and now know. And the excitement spread to me. I pulled him closer and encouraged him to feed more violently.

No, it wasn’t like in all the books. It didn’t burn. It didn’t hurt. It made me feel good.

The pain came later.

That’s the reason you need to keep away from Talbot. And from me actually. Because of what came later.

Sunday 16 January 2011

What Talbot did

Yeah. I’ve been hesitating to tell you. Even now. After all this time. Even though I’m quite used to it. Even like it, really. Especially now that I have Patrick.
And yeah. I got to be like the rest of them. Drooling over Dr Talbot.
It was the day I had the mega argument with Mummy and Daddy. And I mean mega. Of course, it was about the Irish dancing. It would be, wouldn’t it? They wanted me to go to the show with Aunt Kitty. Tamsin was dancing in the youth section. I hate Tamsin. She‘s so good at everything. It’s Tamsin did this and Tamsin did that, and did you know, how good Tamsin is at this, that and the other? I used to feel sorry for her. Her daddy died when she was just five. Aunt Kitty was a mess for years. But now she’s so spoilt and so up her herself. Everybody fusses about her. She can dance though. And that makes it worse. I gave up the dancing when I went to high school. I used to like it, but I was only average.
No, I didn’t want to go and watch her swanking again. I wanted to go to the social at the boys’ school. All the others were going.
“You will not be going to that place filled with rampant young male hormones,” shouted Daddy. His face was bright red and he’s screwed his eyes up so they looked little and mean, just like always when he’s angry.
“You will obey your father,” Mummy cried. “And you know your cousin needs your support.”
“She doesn’t need my bloody support,” I answered. “She’s got everybody and she can dance as well.”
“Fyonah McBride,” said Daddy, getting even redder if that is possible, “you will not use language like that it in this house.”
I think he went to hit me. His arm was definitely raised.
“Donald, no,” shouted Mummy.
But I got out before he could touch me. “You’re damned right,” I shouted “I’ll use what frigging language I like. Because I won’t ever be in this house again.”
And so I went to the social at the boys’ school.
It was actually incredibly boring.
All the others got off with the skanky, pimply lads there. Oh, I had approaches enough, thank you very much. They were all so thin and awkward, though, and most of them were smelly. Either too much deodorant or not enough. They didn’t seem to know what to say. You see, by now I was sooooo in love with Talbot. He was a real man. He wouldn’t be awkward. He’d know what to do.
And because I’d not made proper arrangements about how to get home, I had to walk. Of course I took the short cut through alley off Park lane.
You see, Talbot is dangerous. If he hadn’t have made me love him, if I’d have got off with one of the lads, if I hadn’t turned when he called, if I hadn’t have been on my own….
Yes, it was Talbot that did this to me.
But it might not be quite how you think.
I wouldn’t be here at all if it wasn’t for Talbot. He rescued me.

Thursday 9 December 2010

Taken in by Talbot

Taken in by Talbot
No, I didn’t make up a fake illness so I could get an appointment with the delicious young doctor. Nothing would have been more embarrassing. No, the first time I met Talbot properly was after I fainted at school and Miss Evans, our school nurse, drove me round there in the car.
It was so embarrassing. Then. It wouldn’t bother me now. I don’t have that sort of cycle any more anyway. So, I didn’t have proper periods, but boy, when they came did they hurt! The pain had been so bad I’d keeled over in the middle of a chemistry lesson. I’d smashed a test tube on the way and I’d got a nasty gash on my arm. When he first saw that, Talbot pulled a face and then sent for the nurse. He stayed out of the room whilst she cleaned it up and put a dressing on it.
“Well, well, Miss Fyonah McBride, what’s been happening to you?” he asked, when he came back in. “So much blood. Cutting your arm at the same time as you have your period. Careless! Careless!”
Now, of course, I understand how he knew all of that. And why he licked his lips and why his eyes grew round and his pupils big and then why he closed his eyes and took a deep breath. But then I was really surprised about how he could know about my period – I was such a shy little thing back then.
He sent Miss Evans away.
“We could put you on the pill,” he said.
I blushed and looked away.
“My mummy and my daddy would not be very happy about that,” I said.
“Oh, yes, the Pope,” said Talbot.
When I looked up again, he was grinning.
“Oh, Miss McBride,” he said. “There are other solutions, but you’re really too young for me to suggest those seriously.”
Something happened in that moment. I wasn’t sure then exactly what at the time. Now, I know it was a Talbot trick. But I was well and truly taken in. Then, in that moment as his eyes became silver and he looked at me with half smile on his lips, I knew why the other girls had wanted to go and see him.
My heart rate quickened.
“I’d better examine you,” he said.
A few moments later, I was lying on his couch with just my panties on and covered with a light blanket. He called the nurse in.
“You need a chaperone,” he said. “And don’t worry. I won’t be doing an internal exam today.”
He pulled the blanket down gently and started prodding at my tummy. “I’m sorry my hands are so cold,” he said.
I could hardly breathe. Yet I was able to notice that his nostrils were flaring slightly and that he seemed not to breathe. And at the same time it was incredibly soothing having his cool hands glide across my skin.
“It all seems normal,” he said. “It will all regularise in time. I’ll give you something for the pain.”
“What was the other thing you said I could do?” I asked as he gave me the prescription a few moments later.
“I didn’t,” he said. “I said there wasn’t anything else suitable for someone as young as you.”
“I am nearly sixteen,” I said.
He smiled and this time his eyes seemed to glow gold. “Too young,” he said. “A pity.”
My heart really began to race now. I wanted to see him again. I wanted him to touch me again. I wanted the silkiness of him. I was almost thirsty for him. Even then.
He looked away. “Do come back, Miss McBride, if you have any more problems.” He said, his voice sounding like satin. He looked back at me.
I could not breathe at all now. I thought my heart would stop completely.
If Miss Evans had not come back in and whisked me away, I swear I would have never moved again.

Tuesday 30 November 2010

Talbot’s Story : 1 a new doctor at the health centre

I saw him the first time when I’d just got off the school bus. It was his first day. He got out of his low-slung sports car and took a box off the back seat. Some of the papers from the top of the box blew away and I caught them for him.
I blushed when I gave them back to him. He winked at me. He’s got really sparkly eyes and he’s quite young. He’s tall and dark. Slim. Every girl’s romantic dream?  
Well, that’s what it seemed like when I got back to St Catherine’s. They’d all heard about the new doctor at St Kilda’s health Centre.
“I’m getting my mummy to make an appointment with him,” said Deborah McShay. “About the pain I keep getting in my back. In my lower back, so that I’ll have to take a lot of my clothes off.”  
“Pain in the arse, more like,” said Kitty McGivern. “I wonder if he’s into plastic surgery. You could ask him for a boob job.”
“I don’t need that,” replied Deborah. “But maybe young Fyonnah here….”
She was right. Flat-chested or what? I’d watched all the other girls in my class spread and bloom and if it wasn’t for my long hair and the St Catherine’s floor-length skirt…. I could be taken for a bloke. I wore a bra but I didn’t really need it. I did have periods but they were light and irregular.   
It’s different now.
After Talbot.
It makes me laugh to think of the way they all trooped in to see him, with excuse after excuse.
I was too shy to do that, back then.
And it was so bizarre the way I did eventually get to be treated by him.   
It’s funny. None of them know the truth about Talbot. It is I, shy Fyonnah McBride, who knows the whole story.              
I’m not shy now, though. Not after Talbot.

Wednesday 17 November 2010


You need to steer clear of Talbot. I didn’t. And that’s why I’m the way I am now. It hasn’t worked out too badly for me. I have Patrick now. We have this difficult monthly cycle, though.

It’s a shame I didn’t meet Patrick before I saw Talbot that time in that dark alley.

I shouldn’t have been on my own.
I shouldn’t have been out that late.
And I shouldn’t have turned when he called me.

No, you need to keep away from Talbot.
He is no good.
Steer clear of him.
Keep right away.
He is very bad news.       

Still, maybe I couldn’t cope with Patrick’s strange ways if it wasn’t for what Talbot did to me.

Maybe I should be grateful.

But you should be afraid. Very afraid.   

Talbot is … Talbot.