Was it finally time? Had they finally found someone who was compatible with me? Nearly 3 months of testing, personality tests, and several interviews were hopefully finally paying off. I tapped my foot nervously in the empty interview room. My caseworker had left to retrieve a potential vampire companion. See, I was currently trying to find a vampire willing to share an agreement. They feed off of me, I get paid. But of course, it wasn’t just for money, although I really needed the money. The idea of helping someone and making sure someone is fed makes me happy.
Not once, not twice, but four times I have been passed over. I passed all the health screenings. No diseases, illnesses, or disorders that may impede my ability to give blood. My mental health screening was a little bit iffy, but I had a referral from the therapist, saying that I was mentally fit. The only thing the caseworker, Clare, had warned me about was that I smoked. As you can imagine, everything that goes into a human body changes or affects the blood in some capacity. Some vampires were very picky, wanting only humans that ate certain foods or avoided certain foods. She told me that sometimes it takes a while for someone who smokes to be placed with a companion. She actually urged me to quit.
My thoughts were cut short by the door of the office being opened. I tried to stay calm as Clare entered the room. She smiled brightly, turning to wait for the person following her to enter the room so she could shut the door. My breath caught in my throat as I stared up at him. I had no preference for gender, but I assumed most vampires chose the opposite gender. He was a very intimidating man. He stood well over six feet tall, towering over Clare. Long black hair framed his face in just the right way. His features were sharp, and his body was lean but muscular. He wore a black on black suit with no jacket. The top 3 buttons on his shirt were undone, and his sleeves were rolled up. My eyes scanned over the several tattoos peeking out of his shirt. From what I could tell, his entire chest and both arms were covered. His posture was relaxed, his hands in his pants pockets but I had to turn away from him and look down at my shoes to try and start breathing again. He was gorgeous but had an air about him that made me uneasy.
“Aiden, this is Chris. Chris, this is Aiden, his profile is the one you picked out. Why don’t we have a small interview, and decide what to do from there.” Clare walked to the other side of her desk, shuffling through her papers as I turned my head ever so slightly to peak up at Chris. My breath hitched as I was met by chocolate brown eyes staring down at me. He had stepped much closer to the couch I was sitting on. He smiled down at me, allowing me to catch a glimpse of his pearly whites.
“May I sit?” His voice sounded like honey. Unable to trust my own voice, I simply nodded and quickly turned my eyes back to my shoes. I felt so underdressed. I had a random shirt and black jeans on. My shoes were scuffed to hell and my brown, neglected hair laid however it pleased. The couch dipped ever so slightly next to me, making me realize just how small this stupid couch was.
“So, let’s start with you Chris,” Clare began. “You have already read Aiden’s profile, so you know more about him then he knows about you.” Clare smiled at me warmly, then turned her attention back to Chris. “Does that sound fair?”
“Of course, Ma’am.” Clare blushed slightly before focusing on her papers. I peeked at Chris again to find a slight, smug smile pulling at his lips.
“We require all of our companion applicants to be over 21, but also that our vampire companions to be at least 5 years from their turning date. Can you confirm how old you are and any related information you want to share for Aiden?” Chris turned his attention to me once again. I shifted in my seat a bit.
“Of course,” he spoke, not breaking eye contact. “I was turned shortly after my twenty-fourth birthday. That was over thirty years ago.” I nodded, listening intently but unsure what to say. How has the man not found a companion yet? Most vampires his age have already found a lifetime partner. Most vampires in the program were barely old enough to be in it. “I hope my age doesn't bother you,” he tacked on, his expression falling a bit.
“I- No. It doesn’t bother me.” My voice came out a little breathy. I really wanted to ask him if it bothered him. Instead, I decided to talk about my own age. “I just turned twenty-three. You’re not much older than me.” I smiled, hoping my little joke didn't offend. Chris chuckled, a smirk spread across his face.
“Now Chris,” Chris turned his attention back to Clare. “I assume you read that Aiden smoked. Is there anything you want to know about his diet or habits that may impact your decision?”
“I did see that you smoked, it doesn't bother me. Just means I get more nicotine in my life.” I laughed a bit under my breath. “But I do need to know, what’s your favorite food?” No one had ever asked me what I liked. Usually, they simply stated what they wanted me to eat and what not to eat and asked if I could handle that.
“I love Chinese food, but nothing beats some homemade pasta.” Chris nodded, it looked like he was thinking. “Is there something you wouldn’t want me to eat?” I asked a bit hesitantly. Maybe he just didn't know he could demand something like that. He looked a little shocked but thought about it for a minute.
“I mean, I’m personally not a fan of lamb, but I’ve never drank from someone who has eaten it.” The laugh that came out of me caught both of us by surprise.
“I hate lamb.” Was all I could get out before I laughed again. Was that really it?
“Then I guess we have nothing to worry about.” Chris stared at me intently for a few moments before Clare cleared her thought. I had actually forgotten she was there.
“One last question for you Chris. How often would you like to meet with Aiden?” He seemed to think about the question carefully. Like he wasn't really sure himself.
“I’m cleared for three times a week if you need to feed that often.” Chris looked to Clare, I coulda swore he looked worried. She simply nodded in agreement with me.
“I feel like three times it a bit much Aiden.” The way my name rolled off his tongue made me feel like he was made to say my name. “What about two smaller feds to start, till I get used to regular feedings again. Then we could move to one larger feeding a week.”
“Would that be enough?” I wasn’t a vampire, obviously, but I couldn’t imagine only eating once a week.
“I don’t want to put too much strain on your body.” And with that, he turned back to Clare. “ If Aiden is in agreement, I would like to accept this agreement.” Clare nodded and turned her attention to me.
“I agree,” was all I could say. Had he really made up his mind that quick? No other questions or demands?
“Perfect! I'll just need both your signatures and then of course since this is Aiden’s first time being a companion, we suggest your first feeding to happen here.” Chris turned to look at me before he took the pen from her to sign, promptly sliding the pen and paper to me. I could feel his eyes on me as I signed the paper, passing it back to Clare.
“Aiden,” he said, getting my attention. I looked back at him, his face was very serious. “I must insist on having our first meeting here. You don’t know how your body will react, and I would feel much more comfortable here, where someone is close by to help. Just in case.” I nodded, my face heating up a bit. He seemed to genuinely care about my health.
“I won't be available again until the end of the week. Saturday most likely. We can start today, or wait till then. If you can wait, that is.” Clare looked to her calendar, a worry line formed between her brows.
“If today works, I feel that would be best. I fed a few days ago, but I fear that waiting that long for our first time maybe a bit dangerous.” With that, Clare stood and walked to the door. Chris stood, offering me his hand to stand up. I smiled sheepishly. Here we go I guess.