After 400 years I finally met you
Immortality is such an interesting thing, the ability to watch the evolution of earth and society while sitting in the first row. Is never planned, but sooner or later the path of each immortal will cross with others just like them.
The man helps the old lady back on her feet.
“Are you ok madam?” He asks while looking for any damage in Hana’s clothes, then sees a stain of blood in her sleeve “Does this hurt? I’ll have a word with that gentleman”
He tries to go after the man with dyed hair but Hana grabs his wrist.
“Don’t worry boy, I had this before coming here” Is it in this moment when Hana realizes that was wearing the nightgown all the time, and worst of all it is dirty with the blood stains of Valentine’s tears. Her eyes move around the place, some people are staring, she regrets not changing before leaving the house and that shame rushes to her face making it feel warm “I’ll be taking my leave if you don’t mind, thank you again” She releases and starts walking.
“Wait!” He decides to walk by her side “Let me escort you home, madam”
“That’s a very nice gesture on your part, but there is no need, I’m perfectly capable of returning by myself”
“Really?, It seems to me that you are hurt and maybe lost, please, I won’t be able to concentrate with my stuff if I just leave you here. And I’m sure that your grandchildren will be worried sick”
“No, no, I don't have children or grandchildren. And I only need to turn around here and go in a straight line for less than 10 minutes”
“It’s near then! Ok, I’ll make sure you arrive well and then leave, promise” He puts a hand in his heart and raises the other one.
< Looks that he is honest about it, ok I’ll let him have it > Hana thinks, then sighs and says “You seem like a nice person, thanks. It’s just that I got a little over excited to explore around here, I’ve been sleeping seven decades”
“What? Really!?” His expression is filled with surprise.
“Oh!, No… not really, it’s just an idiomatic expression” She quickly lies.
“Oh, hahaha, yeah… I suppose that makes more sense”
“Do you always help strangers? Sounds fishy or dangerous if you ask me. What if I try to mug you?”
“Nah, you have a nice aura. I like to help people but not everyone is very fond of it. But I get it, these days many prefer to be left alone”
“These days? How old are you? Boy” Hana chuckles.
“Huh, good question” He scratches his chin “I suppose that 20, maybe 27” Then looks at Hana’s eyes and feels judged “Sorry… It’s a secret”
“I see, well, thanks for the chat, we arrived”
He takes a look at the house made with Victorian architecture, the walls are painted with a clear gray and the roof is black as a new moon night.
“Woah, you live in THE creepy old house!?” He quickly covers his mouth with the left hand “Sorry I didn’t mean any disrespect madam. It’s just that I always wondered who lived here, people say that this house exists since the edo period”
“Nonsense, people exaggerate. It’s been here only since the Meiji period. Well, thanks for walking me home, have a good day” Hana waves her hand but the boy stays in the same place.
“I’ll take my leave once I make sure you are inside safe and sound, I’ll wait here”
<What a nosy kid> Hana thinks “Ok, look I’m going inside, BY MY OWN” she arrives at the door and presses with her palm, there is a spell that only opens the doors for her and Valentine, or any other they give permission. The door widely opens by its own “Goodbye boy, thank you”
“Wow! So it has NFC technology!? Awesome! Guess I shouldn’t judge a book by its cover, Goodbye madam!” He raises his hands and waves it.
For a moment before closing, Hana notices how the sleeve in the man’s arm falls down and exposes some scars in the shape of lines, some of them go from right to left and others up to down.
<Is not my business> She thinks and closes the door, then quickly moves to the living room where a big window looking at the street is located. Carefully she moves the curtain and sees the man crossing the street after looking both sides and going back in the direction of the commercial area.
“Valentine was right, I should have waited and go out with her”
Hana decides to relax and sees the gramophone in the same room.
“Good! Time to have a ball on my own. I’ll listen to some tunes” She walks and opens a big closet looking piece of furniture. Inside it, her vinyls are located. Everything looks as she remembers, until she finds the compact disc area and decides to grab one “What is this?” she opens the plastic box and takes out the disc for a better look “It’s so small. Where are the tracks on this thing? It’s so smooth. Useless piece of trash, I bet it doesn’t even have one song” she puts it back “Why does she have so many?” Then she takes out a vinyl, the cover shows four people on a crosswalk “Who are these? I don’t remember buying this one” She turns it and examines each side, then grabs another vinyl but each one goes for the same process, there is sweat in her forehead, she is frightened at the realization of how her collection continued evolving without her “Surely Valentine bought all these for me… But it's just that the world didn’t wait, and left me behind” Finally she grabs one vinyl with lines of color red, pink and yellow, the cover also has the faces of 5 dark skinned men “Oh, I love this one!” There is a shine in her eyes like if she just found gold, with haste reaches the gramophone, sets the record and starts playing. Suddenly the room is filled with a relaxing melody while she sits on a comfortable chair.
Three minutes after listening to the song Hana tries to relax by closing her eyes, but it turns out to be quite difficult to achieve. The voices coming out from the gramophone are full of passion and have a nice harmony, but then a thought crosses her mind <All of them maybe are dead by now, after all they are only humans>
She gets up and walks across the room dragging her feet, looking closely around the room she notices that there are many new things. The tv is a black one, the one that she remembers was two or three times bigger and brown, it used to look like a table but this one is just a big square.
“Hmmph, there is no dial” She searches the way to turn the tv on, but is used to move a dial to do so, since there is no one there she looks at the sides and still doesn’t found one, what she does find is the remote controller but looks at it confused not knowing what it is. She leaves in the same place and leaves to continue exploring “Another piece of junk, Valentine should stop hoarding useless trash”
Next she finds some video tapes and reads the label “Betamax? Clearly an error, Alpha is max, Beta obviously is second '' then sees valentine’s handwriting “Happy new year 1979… well, not so new now” her hands shake trying to put everything back after failing to recognize what were those black rectangles “How did this happen? Why is my memory so fuzzy after waking up? This seems more like a curse than something that I did to myself” she rubs her forehead trying to remember.
“You need me, you’ll never be happy with someone else” A deep male voice appears in her memory, shivers go down her spine.
“Goow niwgth, I’m awake” The basement floor opens and Valentine appears rubbing her eyes, wearing a light blue nightgown and with a rat lab rat in her mouth while she sucks it’s blood looking like the typical school girl trying to eat a piece of bread on her way to class.
Hana loses her train of thought and turns around to see her friend “Valentine! Do you think I’m old?”
“Yes, super old”
“What!?” Hana’s eyes get covered with tears.
“No! Don’t cry, I mean, yes you are old, but it’s a good thing.”
“You are so lucky and beautiful”
Hana draws a smile on her face
“I wish I could get old, and get spots on my skin, and a cute wrinkly face, and white hair…” Valentine continues but gets abruptly interrupted.
“That’s not helping” Hana’s smile disappears “No, in fact that inspires me, I haven’t done a rejuvenating potion in ages”
“Great! Let me finish my rat and I’ll bring you the potions grimoire, in the meantime you can set the kitchen up, and pick up all the mess in this room. I see you are happily listening to your old records but it took me a lot to rearrange them by type and color”
Everything takes around one hour to set up, but now there are both in the kitchen, Hana is surprised at how easy the stove turns on. She puts a gray cauldron of medium size with water and lets it boil, then checks the grimoire and a box full of glass jars of various contents that Valentine also brought.
“So, what age are you trying to turn into?” Valentine asks.
“Well, I’m thinking in the best age, the one were I was at the peak of my beauty, magic, self esteem and of course, youth”
“Oh, you know. The tender age of just fifty two years old”
“What? No! I don’t want to act with humans again telling them that you are my mother or my aunt! Can’t we have the same physical age this time please?”
“Oh the silly young ones, you are just a baby 300 years younger, you wouldn’t understand”
“Hold it! First I’m only 247 years younger, and second” she starts counting with her fingers “I’m like 178 years old already. So I’m not a young one nor a baby. You can’t go back to the same age as you left, loosen up girl, let’s go for a new adventure together, time for a change, what do you say?”
Hana thinks for a moment, looks at the book and the jars with slimy contents, then finally says.
“No, so if you please could give me a hand. Seems I have everything except the tails of two male rats and five hairs from the tail of an old female cat”
“Tsk, Ok. I have rats downstairs, I could use another snack. And the neighbor’s cat who helps me with the leftovers is an old female cat, so I’ll be back soon, just let me check the grimoire to see if anything is missing”
Hana hands over the book, Valentine takes a quick read then nods and leaves downstairs. A few seconds later comes back with another rat in her mouth and a pair of scissors in her right hand, then grabs the rat she left on the table and goes outside saying “Be wight wack”.
The witch starts pouring ingredients and stirring slowly as she reads the grimoire, the liquid is boiling and changes color after each element is added. The water transforms into some kind of dark purple ooze, around fifteen minutes later the entrance door opens and Valentine is back.
“Wow, Gus was not happy with that. But I got a bunch of hairs, hurray!” The vampire says holding up her right hand.
“The name of the cat… … … short for Agustina”
“Ok, thanks. Bring them over here. I must concentrate on this last part”
Hana adds the five hairs first, the ooze starts sparkling, then adds the two rat tails and the liquid color changes to pink.
“Yes! Now we serve” She pours the brew into a cup that looks like a tiny version of a cauldron but has a handle, it also has written on it: ‘Magic 4 Life’.
They sit around the table, Hana raises the cup and mimics a toast “Well, see you on the other side” and drinks all of the contents of it. A bright pink smoke appears like an explosion an fills the room, suddenly the shadowy silhouette of Hana increases size by around ten to fifteen centimeters, her white hair turns black and becomes even more curly, the spots on her skin disappear along with all the wrinkles, the hips increase in size, the smoke dissipates revealing a tall woman with curly black hair arranged as an afro and a gorgeous dark brown skin tone still sparkling with the effects of the potion, she looks at her hands and body totally confused and yells: “What is happening!?”
“Oh My!” A smirk appears on Valentine’s lips “I just remembered that the old cat is called Gus, because HIS name is Asparagus, a male” Her words sound fake, a child acting at a school play could sound more believable “Oh no! The rat tails were from females too. I’m so clumsy making potions, sowwy” She winks her left eye and sticks out her tongue.
“YOU WHAT!?” Her scream is so loud that it makes the dogs of nearby houses start barking and howling again.