Walking down the Greek row of Monster University was both disgusting and fascinating. It was a welcome party that looked completely normal, until you noticed that half the students were drinking blood instead of beer. There were vendors selling everything from crickets for the Medusa to frozen animal hearts for the werewolf population.
As the only human on campus, Rachel should have felt hunted, but she was the one hunting. Her sister would have loved it here, she was always trying to find and understand cryptoids. Rachel sighed at the thought of her sister, she’d been killed when they were twelve; ripped to shreds by something.
Allison had run up to their room saying she’d made a new friend. Rachel assumed it was another imaginary creature and told her to grow up. It was the last thing she’d told her sister. She’d been studying everything she could about monsters and now she was going to find them and make them pay.
“Why so glum, sexy?” Ronnie asked, his crooked smile and appraising gaze made her tingle and blush.
“Your sister says I’m not allowed to flirt with you,” Rachel said coyly as she walked away from him.
His footsteps behind her told her he was following. “Somehow that makes you even sexier.”
“You just want me to make your sister angry?” She smiled at him.
What was she doing? Sure he was handsome, but he was a bloodsucking monster that could rip her apart with one hand.
“Naw that’s just icing on an already tasty cake.”
Spinning around, she tried to mimic the girls she’d seen in high school by jutting one hip out and bending the opposite knee. She put both hands on her hips and gave him a scathing look. “Really? Comparing me to food, and not even something interesting, am I just fluffy tasty calories to you?”
For the first time she saw a crack in his tough jock veneer and he said, “Sa-sa-s- sorry. I wasn’t trying to say that I wanted to e-e-eat you.” She was both ashamed and surprised by his stutter.
Walking towards him, she kissed him on the cheek. She kept her body right next to his, letting him feel her heat. Going on her tip-toes, she whispered in his ear, “Its ok. I just don’t like being compared to food.” She blew lightly on his ear and felt him shiver. “I do like the idea of being covered in icing, though.”
Walking away, she risked a look behind her and saw that he hadn’t moved and his mouth was gaping. She winked at him and saw a smile cross his face.
Through the frantic beating of her heart, she wondered what she was doing, flirting with a vampire. She wasn’t some self-deprecating bland love interest. She turned the corner between two houses and rested her back on the wall of one of the fraternities. She could tell it was a fraternity from its smell, a combination of musk, garbage, and disrepair.
“Good to know that men are pigs no matter what race they are,” she whispered.
“We’re not all that bad,” whispered back a deep voice beside her and she jumped back pulling out a knife.
From the shadows between the two houses she could make out the shape of a man. He lifted his right arm into the air and said, “Whoa, slayer. I’m not looking for trouble.” He stepped out of the shadows and she could see that he had only one arm. He looked human in every way possible except for the fact that he had six fingers.
“Who and what are you?” she asked.
As she looked at him he disappeared and reappeared behind her. “Aren’t you both jumpy and rude. My name’s Dowan and I’m Mannegishi, if you must know.”
Turning quickly she had her knife on his throat before he finished.
“Mannegishi are Tricksters and I thought you were supposed to be tiny?”
“You’re getting us confused with Memegwesi. Common mistake for your people,” he said smiling. He seemed to be enjoying it. His strong chin and high cheekbones made him seem supernaturally handsome.
“My people?” she asked, worried he knew that she was human.
“White kids. You all think you know everything. Just because the Greek myths go at it with anything that moves doesn’t mean the rest of us don’t exist.”
Taking her knife away from his throat, she sighed with relief. “You just scared the crap out of me and then expect me to remember every possible monster?”
Smiling again he waved his hand and said, “Fine. I’m sorry for startling you but it was fun. And don’t think I haven’t noticed that you haven’t told me who you are.”
“Dowan you bastard I’m going to kill you,” said a tall one eyed man who was flanked by three others.
“Ah Al. How have you been?” Dowan asked taking a step back.
“You think you can swindle me and get away with it?” The Cyclops and his friends were easily nine feet tall and muscled like professional wrestlers.
“Yup!” Dowan said and disappeared.
“I guess we’ll just have to teach his friend a lesson than. Aren’t you a pretty little thing,” The Cyclops glowered at her and it made her heart beat quicker, but not in the same way as Ronnie.
She had been walking backwards and found that she was now in the road and there was a crowd around them. There was no way this was going to be a private fight. “I haven’t been called little since I eleven and got a growth spurt,” she replied. It wasn’t witty but it was the best she could do, she didn’t do well with an audience.
For good measure she added, “Leave now and I won’t have to kill you.”
The Cyclops called Al picked up a smart car and tossed it at her.