The University - Michael

The University – Michael

It was a few hours past noon when I awoke. There is no coffin in my condominium, no chains or skeletons hanging from the ceiling. Inside this secure room is a personal sanctuary much like any other bedroom you can find in this building. A king-sized bed with two pillows and white sheets, drawers and shelves for clothes, and a huge flat screen UHD TV. I like my streaming shows and my video games, what can I say. What humans would find puzzling in this room is the lack of a bathroom. I do not process food and waste the same way humans do. So there is no need for a toilet. I do enjoy showers, and for that I use the bathroom in the other room outside, the same one Sarah uses. Sometimes together.

The clothes are also one thing I appreciate in this era. So much diversity and color! Gone are the days when there are ‘prescribed norms’ to how one should dress and how proper attire should be. I mean, in the past few years alone, men and women can almost dress exactly the same, in public, as acceptable! But the university does hold a few standards when it comes to how faculty should dress, so I choose a clean white button-down long-sleeved shirt, jeans, and my favorite brown shoes. I top it all of with my eyeglasses which are obviously none prescription as I have supremely good eyesight thanks to me being a vampire. And my brown sling bag, and I am off.

I quick elevator ride takes me to the lobby. I wave hello to our guard at the door, Roberto, and walk out into the late afternoon.

At sunset, the daylight can be bearable. Younger vampires may still find it impossible to roam at this time, but for someone like me, my two centuries combined from my maker and myself gave me enough protection to walk around. Consider it like walking on a hot day. That’s how it feels. More ancient vampires, those almost a millennia old, can even walk around in broad daylight at midday like it was a chilly evening.

I take the overpass to cross the avenue and walk past the gated steel fence of the campus grounds. Security guards nod as they recognize me and wave hello. I wave back. The Science building is only a 5-minute walk from this gate. As my class starts at 630pm, I can make it there in no time.

I could have gone into any country in the world, in any great city, in any kind of profession, but this place has become a sort of haven for me. It was almost past one hundred years ago, but in memory, it can be so fresh. My master, and eventually my maker, called this place her home. Her family founded the university one-hundred and fifty years ago. She was already a vampire then when they first opened its gates to their students. She could not bear children or sire sons and daughters to follow her footsteps, but she always wished to help build a better generation to follow her. I was a reckless student, wasting away my time with frivolous nothings and a misplaced sense of pride. She took me under her wing, trained me, taught how it is to live a better life for others. And though her time was cut short, she passed on all she had, all she knew to me. From the shadows of lawyers and paperwork, I help maintain control of the university and strive to keep it in her family name. Her grandchildren run it now. And they know me merely as a professor who works here. And that is enough.

Of course my first few years as a fledgling vampire was chaotic. I gave in to my thirsts, used my abilities for my own selfish nature, and went gallivanting around the globe enjoying wealth and women and power. But when I heard news that the university was being bought out by a development company who planned to turn it into a commercial mall, I remembered my master. I gathered my senses, went back her, and made sure that all things remain as she would have wanted, for this place to be an institute of learning, of building up the generations to come. I have strived to follow her code, her goodness ever since. Until Sarah came along.

I still don’t know what I’ll do about that. For decades I have kept my center and carried on with my life with utmost care and restraint. I made all the necessary precautions. Took care of my habits and my whereabouts. Made detailed preparations about my background, history, and did all the necessary paperwork to make me legally and practically…a normal human being. I treat my peers with respect, but was careful not to get too attached or too close to anybody. But when I sensed her, when I met her, all my careful consideration washed away. There’s just something about that young woman that just…quickens the blood.

The sun set completely and I arrive at the foot of the science building. My classroom is on the second floor. Through my acute hearing, I can already hear some of my students chatting inside the room, waiting for their professor. My mind’s eye catches Sarah’s thoughts. This is another ability I have learned to practice. I can connect to the vision and thoughts of a person whom thoughts I inhabit. I am unsure if other beings like me share a similar ability, but this is very useful, especially as a teacher. Can you imagine knowing exactly what your students think of you? They can be very amusing, or frustrating, and sometimes extremely annoying! But I never get offended, they are children after all.

I walk up the steps with a smile and enter the room. I put my bag down on the table and face my students.

“Good evening, class.” I said.

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