Who: Morbius, Six (now five) angry vampires, screaming and terrified civilians, open
What: late night vampire brawl
When: Friday, 12:30 am
Where: Marv's 24 Hour Mart, Lower Manhattan
Morbius locked his grip beneath the snarling face full of fangs and rolled with the momentum, flipping the vampire into a pyramid of canned peas. The three others circled him, with two more scuttling out from frozen foods. This was not going well. What had began as a simple blood sample grab at a vampire safe house hidden behind an all-night grocery had degenerated into brouhaha down Aisle 4. According to Morbius’s data, the haven was supposed to be empty, the nest having moved on. All he needed to to was walk in, sweep the place for DNA, and leave at his leisure. Unfortunately, the nest had not moved on, and he ended up interrupting their dinner.
Their leader, Willis, a thick-necked bruiser in a black stocking cap, bared his teeth and goaded his pack-mates forward. “Freeaakk...” it hissed. “Put this...thing…out of its misery.”
A grey-haired vampire in a tattered overcoat leaped at Morbius, claws extended. The Living Vampire countered by grabbing the vamp’s left arm and twisting, getting it into a headlock. The two spun around in their struggle; the vamp pushed back against Morbius, smacking his skull into a row of cling peaches. Morbius’s vision turned blood red and his own fangs sprouted from his gums. With a howl, he tightened his grip on the grey-haired vamp’s neck and wrenched the creature’s head from its body. The vampire exploded in a cloud of ash and Morbius emerged from the other side, laughing.
It was late.. more like in the a.m. Lately, Jean preferred this. The looks from the students she had been getting were unsettling. She wasn't sure how to deal with them because she'd been trying so hard to not use her telepathy. And save that one time with Scott, she had not.
Nighttime was easy. Sure there were some crazy dreams going on in the students' heads, but Jean never invaded those when she did use her telepathy. So, it was a good time for her to be awake.
She perused the paper, debating a crossword when the teapot whistled to grab her attention. For now she was at peace, but she felt a tad uneasy.
This felt right.. Jean thought as a cool late spring breeze blew against her face in the outdoor cafe she sat in front of. She took a sip of her drink and took a deep sigh, taking in all the smells and sounds of Manhattan.
"I missed this..." She sighed, blinking against the bright sun in her eyes. She had turned off her telepathy they best to her ability as she felt her mind wandering to whether she would see a certain someone, and whether that was a good idea or not.
"Yo!" Maddie called, clattering down the heavy plank stairs sandwiched between the bar and the bathroom hallway. "What's the good word, guys? It's bottling day!"
Downstairs was almost empty at the moment; it was barely noon and they were just opening up. The tavern itself was one big cool space, just slightly dimmer than a restaurant; thick concrete walls and swirling fans staved off the early-summer heat. Like the bar and everything else, the furniture was heavy wood: clusters of round tables, a big trestle-table running along one wall, and two alcoves lined with broad, heavily-padded benches. The whole place smelled faintly of lemon oil, brewing beer--and burgers on the grill, courtesy of one of her two workers on duty. She chattered with them in Cuban Spanish as she ducked behind the bar and into the kitchen and brewery. Today she had three barrels to decant--heffe, pilsner, and a strawberry melomel she used to make drunken lemonade. They wouldn't suffer by sitting a few more hours while they ran around doing everything else to get the place open...but she kept glancing at them regretfully as she checked the kitchen, bar taps, bottles, glasses, back door, and everywhere else for any problems or shortages.
Yeah. This isn't workin'. We need more of a hand around here. Maybe one of the regulars needs a job? Too bad none of the tenants upstairs do. Guess we'll have to see. She already had a Help Wanted sign in the window, along with a Vacancy sign for the three apartments upstairs that she hadn't filled.
One last check around; she then turned to one of the antique mirrors lining the bar wall between bottle-shelves and kegs, and double-checked herself. Usual uniform of jeans and an open workshirt over a tanktop. Hair not too flyaway from the ponytail at her nape. Not too much make-up. No sign of last night's insomnia under her eyes. This'll work.
She penned in the Bottling Day specials: they had two kegs to clear, so the pear cider and chimay had to go cheap. Chicken pot-pies and apple pie a la mode went pretty good with that, so they went up special too. For younger folks or those that didn't drink, she had a batch of cherry lemonade she could pour out for a discount. That done, she made sure she hadn't gotten ink on her hands, and went to open up the front door.
Within a few minutes the first customers came filing in. "Hey guys! Welcome to Maddie's. Feel free to sit anywhere. Who's thirsty?"