Chapter 66 - M.

Chapter 66 - M.



“This is a lot of books about vampires,” the librarian said as she scanned the barcodes.

“Yep, I’ve really gained an interest lately,” I smile.

“Not so common for people older than teenagers to like this stuff. I guess this stuff is mostly old research. If you can call it that.”

I always hated when Librarians would judge people for the books they chose. You’ve got a whole section of the library closed off for adults only. Full of violent and lusty erotica books. Someone comes through and there’s like an unspeakable rule that you can’t say anything. But the minute an adult wants to read a fantasy book or some science fiction the judgement starts. This stuff isn’t even fiction, it’s research into vampires. I need to learn more and I can only keep Destiny to myself for so long and I don’t want to spend that time asking her about vampires. 

The trunk probably wouldn’t be the best place. I leant Elias my car for an art showing and he’s got some supplies back there. I just put them in the back seat next to the board games. I don’t have time to be neat. I’m already running late for work. I was supposed to start migrating our data to the new server twenty minutes ago but the library was on the way. I figured I could stop and grab the books I had placed on hold.

“Sorry I’m late,” I rush through and immediately pull my laptop out my backpack.

“Don’t worry, you’re almost never late. You’re one of the good ones,” my boss pats me on the back as he heads to his office.

I smile, because I don’t want to lose my job, my really good job. Still I know what he meant by one of the good ones. I’ve heard it all my life. You speak so well, you’re so polite, you’re one of the good ones. On the surface, there’s nothing wrong with those statements, but the follow up is implied. For a black person, is what goes behind every one of those statements. That’s the part that bothers me. Not one of the good IT people, but a good black person. One of the worst parts about this job. I’m supposed to be doing all this super cyber security stuff. In the end, I’m just updating software and telling people how to fix things they could have googled. If the pay wasn’t so good, I’d have quit a long time ago. Who am I kidding? I went to college, I’m sure this plagues the whole industry. It’s a job, everyone hates their job. That thing about never working a day in your life if you do what you love, not true. I love computers, I love research and it turns out, I hate my job.

But I’m good at it, and it doesn’t take long before I’ve finished up. Back in my office, I dive into today’s task. Finding information on Destiny. I’m not always able to connect with people face to face, a computer helps. I can find out where they like to shop, favorite websites, friends, family and even lovers. A little typing and I can find their financial institution, see what their spending habits are. Some people might find it weird, but I find asking people about their favorite places to shop weirder.

Even weirder, there’s not much on Destiny. Birth certificate in Ohio, bank account, a few thousand in savings. Checking usually around three hundred. Doesn’t seem to make any extravagant purchases, but the shoe budget is wild, I can’t judge. Occasional payments from S. Syndicate International. I imagine that’s the Shadow Syndicate she mentioned. No myspace, no live journal, she keeps a really low profile, nothing more than she has to. Maybe that’s a good thing because for the first time ever, I actually feel dirty looking at this information. Almost as if I’m reading a diary she had tucked away. I could get into her email, but I think I’ve done enough already. 

*****

“Are you serious,” Destiny forces through her laugher. Holding her stomach and pointing at me.

“I’m so serious,” I say opening up the box for Monopoly.

“I never agreed to this sham you’re calling a date. On top of that, THIS, is your idea of a date? Board games,” she continues to laugh.

“So, you don’t want to play Monopoly? You won’t mind if I play by myself and I’m the racecar?”

“I didn’t say that. I’m going to destroy you, bankrupt you, take your favorite pair of sneakers as a trophy,” she says grabbing the racecar.

“That’s what I thought,” I laugh, I wanted to be the battleship anyway.

For someone who laughed at me for wanting to play Monopoly she was having a good time. I had seen Destiny smile before, but this was different. She had a real smile on her face, a night away from vampires and killing stuff seemed to be perfect for her. Just board games and talking. Elias thought it was dumb, but I don’t know anyone that hates board games. Even if they are undead vampires who go to church. When the game got too intense, we ordered pizza and switched to playing Life.

“So, you’re the type to just knock a woman up without a ring. But I guess you stay loyal” she joked.

“You’ve got two vans full of kids,” I responded.

“I always wanted a big family, and besides this one just crossed the finish line,” she gloated.

“Okay, okay. You and you gaggle of kids win. It’s getting late, I should head home,” I reach for my shoes.

“You can just stay here, we’ve got more games to play. Then we can do a séance. A real sleep over” she shrugged, putting away the game.

“A séance with you will probably include real ghosts. But I’ve never been to a sleepover, so your offer is tempting.”

“What do you mean you’ve never been to a sleepover? Like, never?”

“Nope.”

“Why not,” she asked almost offended.

“Didn’t have a lot of friends growing up and mom always said school was more important than hanging out.”

“That sounds miserable. Do you get along with her now?”

“We’re cool. I don’t tell her much about my life and she doesn’t ask anymore. But we don’t fight,” I think the relationship is normal.

“Well, that’s kind of sad, but I get it,” she pauses. “But tonight, is about fun. So, take your shoes off, sit down, and pass me another slice of pizza. So, I can beat your ass in Uno until the sun comes up,” she rips the cards free from the plastic.

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