The Fangs of Life by Vivienne Moles

‘I think it’s time we had a little mother and daughter chat,’ said Emily. Her daughter was twelve and it was time, she thought.
‘Oh, Mum, this is embarrassing,’ said Heather, blushing violently. ‘We don’t need to— we really don’t.’
‘I’m sorry but it’s necessary,’ insisted Emily. ‘You need to know these things. I’ve had a word with your father— ‘
‘Oh, Mum— really?’ Heather was becoming increasingly uncomfortable.
‘We really think you should be aware of— well, certain things.’ Heather realised her mother wasn’t going to let it go. 
‘Come on, I don’t bite.’ Emily smiled broadly, exposing a matching pair of canines overlapping her lower lip. ‘Well, I have it under control, is what I meant to say.’

Heather gasped and her eyes widened, as did her mouth.
‘You see, we’re not, shall we say, a normal family. Your father and I thought it was time we explained your heritage.’
‘My what?’ said Heather looking perplexed.
‘My mother— your grandmother— was a vampire. I didn’t get my fangs until I was about fifteen. I needed to prepare you, just in case. No one can predict accurately when you might start growing them.’ She stroked her daughter’s head gently, trying to wipe away the worries that she knew she had just planted, regretting she had to do it at all. She had been dreading this day.

The penny dropped with a loud clang.
‘That’s why you’re on night shifts and sleep in the day?’ said Heather eventually.
‘Yes, it’s the best way to deal with it.’
‘My father—?’
‘Is not a vampire.’
‘Oh,’ said Heather. This would take a while. Emily started to walk to the cellar door.
‘Have a good day at school, dear. I’ll see you at dinner. Probably best not tell anyone, eh?’

Selected: Weekly Write #18
to be published in Issue #31

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