The Iron in Blood HTML version

The Iron in Blood
Jenny Doe
Copyright 2013 by Jenny Doe
I’m not a believer. I’m pretty sure I never really believed in Father Christmas or the
tooth fairy or any number of magical creatures that litter childhood like so muc h detritus
from earlier darker wierder times. Let’s face it, the idea of a tiny person sneaking about
taking children’s teeth while they sleep is just creepy. I’ve never been a member of any of
the current world religions or their derivatives either. I don’t believe that invisible pixies
populate gardens, or that aliens spend their time cruising the skies looking for the worlds’
most intellectually challenged individuals to deliver messages of goodwill and try out their
latest in probes. And I’d certainly never have dreamed of believing in vampires.
I do read books, though, and watch movies, and I’ve noticed that one of the common
theories about vampires is that it’s a condition that is somehow transferable between two
individuals, like some kind of freaky infection.
Turns out vampires do exist. But they’re born, not made.
The story of how I ended up, not believing in vampires, but knowing without a doubt
that they live and breathe, started a couple of weeks before my eighteenth birthday. I was
walking home from school at a bout three one gloomy Thurday afternoon, watching the
familiar cracks in the pavement glide by below my feet, when the sound of a car engine
being revved made me glance up at the car hurtling towards me. I guess I should have
known that it would never be able to stop on ti me, but I just stood there watching it, right up
until it clipped my left leg and sent me flying through the air.
I landed painfully on the road, and slid for a few feet, adding various unbelievably
painful grazes to my growing lis t of injuries. I lay there on the tarmac, stunned by the
unfamiliar pain shooting through my body, while people started gathering around me,
shouting for help and c ollectively dialling 999 on about eight mobile phones. A skinny
woman wearing a purple jumpe r loomed over me, and pushed me back down every time I
tried to sit up. I lay on that road, embarrassed and aching, and hoping against hope that
nobody I knew would ever find out about this. Teenagers hate fuss, and I hated it more than
Next thing an ambulance had arrived – a huge yellow blob-shaped vehicle with a blue
light flashing away on top of it. Two para medics jumped out of the front of the vehicle, one
really short with a big pervy g rin, and one really tall with a vaguely sour expression. I
wondered briefly if I was going to be continuously sliding down a n incline between the two
of them as they carried me into the vehicle, but fortunately they came equipped with a
stretcher that was balanced beautifully on nice even wheels. They made sure I was
breathing and conscious, and then they asked me loads of awkward questions before they
lifted me carefully onto a hard board, and strapped the world’s most constricting torture