Elizabeth stood in the doorway of her father’s home office, watching as he worked. They had been talking about her going off to college. “It will do you good to be out in the world for a while,” he said, without looking up.
“I know, but I’ve never been out of our town. What would be the point in going to a faraway college?” She asked.
“Because you need to live your life,” he said, looking up and motioning her to come and sit with him.
Elizabeth stepped into the office and sat down in the warm leather chair near her father’s desk. “Father, what does it matter to anyone?” She asked.
He laughed. “It doesn’t, but there will be a time when you aren’t able to go out and do things like normal people. I want you to enjoy those things before that time comes,” he said, closing the journal he had been writing in.
She sighed. “You might be right, but I’m not admitting it,” she said with humor in her voice.
“Didn’t think you would. So which schools have you been looking into?” He asked.
“Well, my grades are good enough that I should be able to get into any place I apply. I’ve been focusing on Stanford and Yale, maybe even Harvard. But I could always just apply to a local school,” she said.
He smiled, “Yale or Harvard, not bad choices,” he said. “What about your studies? What are you thinking?”
Elizabeth leaned back against the chair. “I would have said history, but I can just ask you anything about that I need to know. I should probably focus on something more modern,” she said.
He nodded. “A sound idea.”
“Are you going to go check out the colleges before you choose?” He asked.
“I scheduled a walk through at Yale for next week, haven’t gotten around to doing it for the other two,” she admitted.
They continued to talk about the schools and what she was going to do for about an hour. Then she excused herself from the room. Walking away, Elizabeth went up to her room on the second floor. She stepped into the sitting room of her suite, eyes scanning the room as she walked across to the floor to ceiling window and pushed it open.
The lavender scented breeze floated in as she stood with her hands on the stone rail of the balcony. Her life wasn’t what she wanted it to be, but there wasn’t anything she could do about that. She pulled out her cell and dialed a number from memory. She waited a few seconds before the call connected. “Hello,” a male voice said.
“Afternoon, Kenneth. I just spent the last hour talking to my father about college. Want to come over and watch movies for a few hours?” She asked.
There was a pause before he answered. “How about you come down? I’m not in the mood to deal with your father,” he said.
She sighed. “I know. The man is strange, but you know I have a lot of issues with the idea of leaving this house.”
“There is that, but if you are going to go to college, you need to get out in the world more than a couple of hours a day,” he said.
“Okay. You’re right. I hate it, but you are right. I’ll meet you at the pizza shop on Donavan Street,” she said.
“See you in a half hour,” he said before hanging up the phone.
Elizabeth closed her phone and put it back in her pocket. Taking a deep breath, she pushed off the railing and headed back through her room. She grabbed her wallet and keys off the chest of drawers next to the door. Heading downstairs, she paused at the door of her father’s office. “I’m going out,” she said once she had gotten his attention.
Her father smiled. “Really, mind if I ask where you are off to?” He asked.
She shook her head. “Just going to have pizza and watch a movie, Kenneth,” she said.
“Be safe and make sure you are home by midnight,” he said, going back to his journal books with a knowing smile tugging at his lips.
She would not acknowledge the idea percolating in his head. The simple thought of her hooking up with Kenneth this early in the plan was laughable. They had years before that would be on the table. She turned and headed on out to the garage. There she climbed into the sporty little ford mustang he had bought her and drove toward town. The drive was uneventful as she maneuvered the car through the streets, down the hill and into the city proper. Pulling into the parking lot of Donavan’s pizzeria, she let out a long breath. She parked in the last spot in the lot and turned off the engine.
Kenneth was standing in front of the building smiling and laughing with a pair of other boys she knew vaguely from interactions with Kenneth. She waved as she climbed out of the car. “Hey,” she called.
He stepped away from his friends with a wave. “Hey, Elizabeth. Good to see you made it,” he said.
She stood leaning against the front bumper of the car. “Yeah, I made it. You know being out and about is difficult, right?” She asked.
He nodded. “I know, but if you don’t do it, you will lose the ability to,” he said.
“So, you want to do pizza or movie first?” She asked.
Kenneth looked back at the building. “Movies. Something isn’t right in there,” he said.
She looked at the pizzeria and swallowed hard. Through the window, she could see two groups of people that seemed to set for a fight. She nodded. “Movie. Dexplex or River Cinema?” She asked.
He thought for a minute before answering. “Dexplex. They’ve got the new horror movie playing,” he said.
“You okay with leaving your car here or do you want to follow me over?” She asked, still watching the groups in the pizzeria. Before he could answer her she spoke again, “Never mind, grab you car and meet me there.” She moved and opened the door of the car, keeping her eyes on Kenneth as he walked to his car. Once he was safely inside, she climbed into the mustang. She drove through town, keeping half an eye on Kenneth in the rearview mirror.
It took them about ten minutes to get to the cinema. She parked, and he pulled into the spot next to hers. Getting out, they locked their cars and headed inside. Kenneth paid for their tickets, while Elizabeth bought them popcorn and sodas. They watched the movie without worry, both of them enjoying the story.
As they left the cinema and walked toward their cars, Elizabeth wasn’t paying attention, just letting her mind wander. Her thoughts were snapped back by the sound of a snap in the air. Her chest flamed with pain. Falling to her knees, she clutched her chest. Kenneth was there beside her in an instant. His voice was soft. “Don’t worry, everything will be fine,” he said.
She tried to force words out, but the pain was too great. A second snap brought the now silent air of the parking lot. A puff of dirt appeared by her feet, and then she was being pulled into Kenneth’s arms. He ran toward his car, yanking open the door and sticking her in the backseat. “Don’t worry, I got this,” he said, his voice sounding fainter.
She could tell the car was moving. Elizabeth tried to figure out where he was taking her, but the darkness of unconsciousness wrapped around her, dragging her under.
Her eyes snapped open. The pain was gone. She could feel the softness of a bed under her. “What’s going on?” She asked, not even sure there was anyone in the room.
Kenneth’s voice answered her from the darkness. “Just had to move the timeline up. Everything went fine,” he said.
She sat up, her eyes adjusting to the darkness. “So, was it your father or mine who changed me?”
Kenneth blushed. “Mine. We called your father, but he couldn’t get here fast enough.”
She sighed. “So much for going away to college. I don’t think they will have classes for vampires.” She laughed as he sat on the edge of her bed.
“We’ll figure it all out.” Kenneth said, leaning forward and pressing a kiss to her forehead.
She felt a smile touch her lips. Life was going to be extremely fun in the next few years.