The Danning Beginnings – Chapter Seven

*Still Cal*

I woke up to the Professor standing over me, shaking me gently. I opened my eyes, squinting up at him. There was a bit of a flash of light and soon I saw Penny’s form, coming to life with me waking up.

“Dad?” I asked, worried that something had happened.

The look on his face was strange. His eyes got wide as his face went first super pale, then bright red. “Wh-wh-what?” he stammered, sounding confused and a bit worried.

“Is my dad okay?” I asked again, sitting up a bit.

His face flushed even more and now he was obviously embarrassed. “Y-y-yes,” he squeaked and I breathed out. “He is r-r-resting now, we’ve f-finished fixing him up. W-well my s-sister has finished, I j-just passed her tools and… s-stuff…” He rubbed the back of his head and moved as I got out of the bed. “He will n-need a bit of bed r-rest, but I th-think he will be b-better now.”

“What does your sister think?” I asked, frowning.

Kay’s eyes darted away from my face. “Sh-she thinks he will be okay now.”

I sniffled, suspecting this was a lie. “Really? Or are you just saying that to make me feel better?”

“Calcifer, I am sure he is telling the truth.” I looked over as Penny finally spoke and narrowed my eyes at her.

“Grownups lie to kids all the time,” I spat out then glared again at Kay.

He sighed and shrugged. “I b-believe he will be fine. It is h-hard to tell wh-what my sister thinks s-since she is so c-c-confident in her own skills, sh-she tends to not s-see any other option other th-than success.”

“She didn’t succeed last time, she screwed him up,” I snarled.

“Calcifer, he had you because of it, I don’t think that is a screw up,” Penny said softly.

“I AM A SCREW-UP!” I yelled back then felt ticked off, realizing what I just said. Kay was staring, Penny was staring, and it was that moment that Doctor Redding walked into the room, without so much as a knock.

“Most people under a certain IQ level are,” she said simply and I bared my teeth, curling my hand into a fist.

“I didn’t mean it like that! I meant you screwed up my dad so much he needed to have an operation again! You suck as a doctor, you know that?”

She stared blankly back at me while Kay started panicking. “As I am the first human in medical history to successfully transplant a working womb into a male body as well as have his sperm used as female eggs, and have him go through pregnancy and give birth, I do not comprehend how you can even make that statement.”

“You–the–my–” I sputtered, growing angrier at her arrogance. “If you didn’t suck as a doctor my dad would be fine!”

“He is fine,” she answered.

“BEFORE YOU WERE HERE HE WASN’T!” I started to go forward but Penny held me back. “Penny, let me go, I’m gonna knock her teeth in!”

“Who is Penny?” she inquired, narrowing her eyes.

“R-remember…?” Kay mumbled and now she was squinting at him. “The d-doll?”

Suddenly the woman was looking at me again. “The doll? She has become–life-sized?”

I froze up, not liking the idea she knew anything about Penny. Kay had told me a bit about it and confessed he and she had been the ones to send her to me, but beyond that I knew nothing or even how they got her in the first place. But I didn’t like it. I straightened my shoulders and made sure I was completely in front of Penny, to protect her; though that was kinda silly, really, since they couldn’t see her. “She is none of your business,” I said.

“She–“

But Doctor Redding was cut off by a crash from the bathroom, and a thin cry. All of us stared and then Redding turned to say something to me but Kay began speaking before she could. “W-we n-need to f-feed her,” he said, tugging at his sister’s sleeve. “I th-think she’s just broken my sh-shower and she could easily b-break down the door.”

“You would think a vampire that has not fed lately would be weaker,” Doctor Redding said, tapping her cheek. “Perhaps we need to find a reinforced room to observe her.”

“Observe her?!” I spat out, not done with my argument. I had too much pissed-off-ness to just drop it. “You gonna starve her and observe it? What kind of sick psycho are you?!”

She glared at me. “There is little research in the human world of the undead and I, for one, desire to know more. Which is why I am keeping her and not doing away with her.”

I had had enough. I took a swing, but she grabbed my wrist and flipped me easily to the floor. I wailed as my back hit the floor and I saw stars, trying to look up at her. She was leaning over me, her smug face even smugger. “You should not attack others if you are too weak to defend yourself,” she said. Now I reeeallly wanted to knock her teeth in.

“Calcifer…” Penny knelt down next to me, stroking my hair. “Please remain calm. She seems very dangerous.”

“Brother, I need your assistance with Jacob,” Doctor Redding said out of no where. “That is why I came in here.”

“Is he–” Kay hesitated, glancing at me as I got to my feet, rubbing my back from the pain.

“Is he all right? Or did you kill him while Kay was out?” I finished for him, ad-libbing a bit of my own thoughts in there. Kay blushed and Doctor Redding raised her eyebrows.

“I said a moment ago he was fine, or is your memory that abysmally short?” Doctor Redding sneered. Okay now she was purposely trying to bait me. And it was working. Penny held me back just as I started to lunge, and the idiotic doctor just stepped back, looking bemused. “I require someone to sit with him to make sure he rests well. As you have no medical training, I was going to have my brother sit with him.”

“Y-yes, of course,” Kay said, hurrying to leave the room. He stopped in the doorway, eyes huge. “S-sister, why don’t you s-sit in the living room for a wh-while and C-Cal, you can stay in h-here?”

“Are you worried about what might happen if we stay in the same room?” Doctor Redding asked, giving me a look that made me growl in return. “Perhaps you are right. My tetanus shots are up-to-date but you never know.”

“YOU B–” But Penny prevented me from tackling the doctor, and she glided out of the room. Kay gave me an apologetic look before scurrying out. I began cussing and flailing my arms until finally Penny let me go. I glared at her and she nervously twiddled her fingers.

“I am sorry but I did not want you hurt again!” she said, going to the door to shut it. “I think it is best if you don’t aggravate her.”

I pointed at the door. “SHE was the one to say shit about ME, Penny! Tetanus shots indeed.” I went over and kicked the door. “She’s psychotic. I can’t wait until Dad is all better and we can get the hell away from those freak-o twins!”

“Professor Redding seems nice,” she said quietly.

“Yes but he’s got a nutcase sister who will probably show up and insult me every week!” I kicked the door again and then reached down, rubbing my foot. “It’s better if we put many, many miles between us and them. You feel safe around the twin of someone who ran someone over and is letting them starve? I should let that vampire out with a path towards that jerky doctor.”

“Aren’t vampires dangerous?” Penny asked, coming close to me. “Wouldn’t she hurt you first?”

I sniffled loudly. “I’ll open it from afar.” Though I was very curious about what had happened behind that bathroom door. I knew the legend was that vampires were resilient to stuff like being run over, but was it really true? Okay, she was still alive–or partially alive–but I didn’t exactly get a good look at her. Maybe she was seriously hurt. Maybe she tried to get up and fell into the shower door and was now laying there, in pain… and starving… wanting someone to feed on… like a stupid teenage boy going in thinking she was hurt.

“Calcifer?” Penny asked, and I jumped. “Did I scare you?”

“I’m not scared!” I complained, then began rubbing my chin. “Just… worried. About the vampire.”

“Would you like me to go in–“

“No,” I said swiftly. “You may not have blood or–or can be seen but–no. No.” I cracked open the door and looked out. Doctor Redding was sitting on the living room sofa, reading a book. “I’m sure Kay will make sure the vampire is okay… fed and all that…” I shut the door again and leaned against it, my eyes meeting Penny’s empty, plastic ones.

I often felt there was a bit chasm between her and me, and right now it was there, separating us. Something I sometimes wondered could be changed if she was a real human. Something I was afraid of, if she was a real human. I wished I could change her, though. Kay had told me a little bit, not much. I needed to know more. But one of the problems was something I didn’t know how to change. He had told me that the person who changed an Imaginary Friend, as he said she was, needed to know about the–the–the–body. Otherwise bits might be missing.

I knew basically what a girl should look like. I had seen drawings in school books and some… photos…. But drawings and photos weren’t real girls. I considered looking it up online but sheesh, I knew all I’d probably get is porno and I could never explain that to my dad if he somehow found out what I was looking up. Besides, I had the feeling that Penny in toy form had less plastic than girls who posed nude. And I still didn’t have understanding of what went on in the insides of girls. So I wasn’t ready to turn her human. And I just had to… to deal with the chasm.

Sighing, I trudged back to my dad’s bed and sat down. Penny offered to go get me food and I agreed, knowing if I went out there with that stupid doctor sitting there then another fight would break out.

*Jacob’s POV*

I was having a lovely dream. I was at the beach and it was a bit warm out with a cool breeze. I was jogging down along the sand all alone, listening to the waves. But soon there was someone beside me. I didn’t turn to see who it was cause I knew if I did, they’d disappear. It wasn’t my son, so I had no idea who it was. Whoever it was kept up with my jogging and I felt really happy they were there.

Then we stopped running and just watched the waves, holding hands. I started crying because I knew our time was coming to an end. The dream had to end sometime. The person with me reached over to wipe away my tears with their thumb and then tilted my head in to kiss me when I woke up, shocked to see Kay’s face there–but it was only there, because he was sitting right there by my bed, asleep.

As soon as I stirred, the pain hit. I tried to muffle my cry of pain by putting my hand against my mouth but Kay woke up with a start. He dropped the book that had been open in his lap, getting to his feet and coming towards the bed. “Y-you’re awake,” he said, smiling. “You’ve b-been asleep quite a l-long time. Are you f-feeling all right?”

“I–I think so,” I replied, moving my body a bit. “Ouch! I do have pain.”

“Th-the same pain as before?” he asked and I shook my head. “That’s g-good at least. Where does it hurt?”

“Along my belly, but it feels different,” I said, moving my hand to touch my belly but before I put my hand against it, he grabbed hold of my hand. For a split-second I was reminded of that dream.

“It’s p-probably the incision,” he said softly. “It’s going t-to hurt for a while. But you m-might have similar pain inside. My s-sister moved some st-stuff around. She says n-now you sh-should be fine, th-though a regular hospital w-wouldn’t be able to take care of anything s-so if you n-need medical attention you w-will need her again.”

“Hopefully I won’t anytime soon,” I said, lifting my head a little to look down at my stomach. I had a sheet over me so I couldn’t see anything. “How long was I out?”

“Altogether it’s b-been almost a f-full day,” Kay said to my surprise. “We had y-you out for about s-s-seventeen hours and then you’ve been asleep on y-your own f-for about four and a h-half.”

“Will I have to be on bed rest for a while?” I inquired.

“Y-yes, probably it w-would be best if you st-stayed in bed for at l-least two or th-three, and after th-that y-you shouldn’t do much m-more than go to the bathroom,” he murmured, leaning in close.

“How will I use the bathroom until then?” I asked.

“W-well, I c-can help–” He stopped and his eyes darted down to his lap. “Or C-C-Cal c-c-c-can h-help.”

“Oh, I thought you meant not getting out of bed for anything,” I said with a laugh. “What about food?”

Now Kay smiled warmly at me. “I’m n-n-not completely hopeless in th-the kitchen, you know. I c-can cook. And order in. D-don’t you worry about food, Jacob. Oh!” Suddenly he let go of my hand, and went brighter red than I thought possible. “I’m s-s-s-s-sorry I f-f-forgot I was–I w–I’m s-sorry!”

I pulled my hand up near my chest, thinking of that beach again. “It’s all right,” I said absentmindedly. I had forgotten he was holding my hand. How did it even start? Oh yes, he was preventing me from touching the incision mark. “How is, um, the um, person?” I decided not to say ‘corpse’. I figured they had finally called in someone to deal with it.

“Wh-what p-person?” Kay asked then flinched. “Oh! The v-v-vampire.”

“Vampire?!” I started to sit up but Kay was on me in an instant to stop me from sitting up even more, gently holding my shoulders down. “It was a vampire?! Or, is a vampire? A v-v-v-vampire?!” I stared up at him in horror. There was a vampire in the house? A blood-sucking undead creature? In the same house as my son?! “You have GOT to be kidding me!” I hoped it was just a joke. Vampires didn’t really exist. Neither did ghosts, and I never believed in them all those times I had to go through the graveyard late at night. In the dark. Alone. Surrounded by dead people. Nope, no ghosts–and no vampires either.

“N-no, she’s a v-vampire,” Kay said, shooting a look towards the closed bedroom door. “My s-sister–w-well, that’s why my sister w-wants to keep her–for–studying.”

“You can’t keep someone, even a dead someone,” I said. “Isn’t that like, illegal or something? Aren’t vampires–NO! What am I saying?! Vampires aren’t real!”

Kay locked eyes with me. “Are y-you s-saying I’m lying? I wouldn’t lie. N-not to… you…” He trailed off and stood up, turning his back to me. “She’s a v-vampire and you are right, my sister shouldn’t k-keep her. It’s wrong. I am g-going to try and… figure out a w-way to stop my sister from d-doing something stupid.”

“Why is she even interested in vampires? I thought she wanted to meet aliens?”

Kay began fiddling with something on top of the dresser. “Sh-she… has a lot of interests. Aliens… are wh-what she dreams about, of course, b-but she has a widespread interest in–in other things… such as other supernatural b-beings.”

I rubbed my forehead and wanted to sit up to see him, but didn’t dare move. “What’s she planning on doing with the vampire?”

“You n-need to rest,” Kay said, not even hiding the fact he was avoiding my question.

“Kay–“

He spun around and smiled, this one more fake than the one had had not long ago. “Please r-rest, Jacob. Unless you n-need something? A b-book or something? I d-don’t know if you sh-should eat, but if you are th-thirsty…?”

“Some water would be nice, and a book, and an answer to my question–what is she planning on doing with the vampire?”

Kay went towards the door, grabbing the knob. “I’ll be r-right back.” And then he was gone, still not having answered my question which made me feel anxious for the vampire, even if it was a blood-sucking monster.