She swatted at him, irritated, her hand flopping at the end of the wrist forlornly.

He snatched at her fingers and touched them to his lips.

“Liz. I’m still here. I’m not going to leave.”

Her hand was cold as he clasped it between his. The stain on the front of her blouse seemed to blossom more with every breath she took.

“Go. I’m tired.” She yawned and then, miraculously, she laughed, wincing from the effort. “Is it time to get up?”

“No. It’s time to sleep.” He reached out and stroked a few strands of hair from her neck, feeling the pulse that throbbed there. He traced the outline of her throat with his fingers. She swallowed, coughed.

He wiped the blood from her chin.

“What is wrong with me?” Her head slumped forward onto her chest. “I can’t keep awake. Feel so silly”

And that was it. Her eyes closed.

He unbuttoned her blouse, examined the bite marks that had turned her stomach to meat, kissed her forehead one last time and then shot her between the eyes just as she awoke, screaming.

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