"Okay Katrina, I want you to close your eyes and just... listen."
Another psychiatrist, another pointless exercise, but always a similar dream.
The doctor was a pale man with a big mess of brown hair, which he slicked back with gel and a comb in his top pocket of his white uniform. He was very thin, had a pointed face and a pair of black thick-rimmed glasses which he rested on his large nose. His hands were slender and bony and Katrina could feel them shaking as he placed a white circular pad on each of her temples.
"New boy" she thought. He sighed. Everything about him seems nervous and worried, but Katrina chose to ignore it.
"Try to relax... urm, breathe in and out. The pads will measure your heart rate and the monitor here will tell me, urm, well... your heart rate."
He burbled on about the science of it all but she didn't listen and continued to stare at the ceiling.
"Tell me about this dream..."
This sentence caught her off guard and the monitor beeped faster at the increase of her heart rate. The thing was, she'd love to tell him, she really would. But he would never understand.
"It's nothing." She muttered, calming her heart beat. He leaned in closer, "well, it must be something honey" he gave a small weak smile; she shook her head.
"Well, we have an hour, urm, and we need to talk about this, er, it's on the agenda." He pointed to the pin board on the wall which had a note saying 'Katrina, 9.30 am; dreamer'.
She was labelled a weirdo, a freak, a nutter and a dreamer. She wasn't any of those things.
She was unique; she was Katrina.
She gave a small smirk, "well, I am not a 'dreamer'. Because my dreams are very real indeed"
"What do you dream of?"
The doctor looked confused and pushed his glasses up his disproportional nose.
"Who are... They, my dear?" Katrina laughed and felt a surge of energy buzz through her. "If only you knew."
Her fingers began to twitch and her head flicked to face the doctor, she could feel the sharp pain in her mouth she would only feel a few times in her existence. She smiled with all her teeth at the doctor and ran her tongue over her growing canines. His eyes grew wide and he started to whimper pathetically. She rolled her eyes. Katrina grabbed his face and he squirmed and tired to wriggle free, he tried to scream for help but his throat was dry and it felt like he'd swallowed sandpaper.
"Scream all you want, no one will hear you..." he gulped, she leaned in and whispered in his ear "and you'll be dead in a few seconds anyway."
And with that, she sunk her fangs into the side of the doctor's neck. He shrieked with the pain, unable to utter a word. His pale complexion turned ghost white, he went numb and weak, he fell to the floor completely drained literally- his glasses shattered on the floor and he lay still. He was dead.
She could dream. It sounded ridiculous; it was. She drained the blood of mortals so she could dream. Compared to the other vamps in the area, she was a saint; a mere child for wasting blood on pathetic things. The others were monsters, they killed families, they left mess; they were murders. She only killed when she was starving; six months without blood.
She let the taste engulf her, the sweet nectar rolled through her veins like oil to rusty cogs. She let her head lull to one side and Katrina closed her eyes.
She was weak; dreams made her tired.
But her mind drifted to the place it belonged, the place she called home.
The Parade of acceptance, the Parade of loyalty, of love and of hope The Black Parade.
She awoke in the wasteland, as usual. The dust was heavy and the smell of damp was strong in the air. The sky was dark and bleak, the ground uneven and scattered with rubble. The air was cold, she sensed a storm was coming.
It was always darkest just before the dawn
She closed her eyes and listened, she listened for the faint sound in the distance. The 'call', the longing; the drums.
She took a long, deep breath and opened her eyes; there it was. Like a mirage or a dream or a beautiful memory. She smiled and clambered over the rubble towards the moving plinth, the whole parade came to a halt. She'd never approached them before, only watched and wondered and dreamed. The leader, a man with short, bleached blonde hair cocked his head to one side. He was tall and wore a black jacket with silver detailing; his trousers were skinny and detailed to show off his figure and made him look in charge. A small smirk crept along his lips.
"I want to be a member" Katrina blurted loudly, so it sounded as if all the words mashed together, the leader laughed. "Oh baby, and what makes you think we want you?"
Her cheeks tinted red, "I'm serious! I'm fed up with that human lifestyle!"
He laughed again, a cold hearted laugh; he could be a real bitch at times. She sighed and glanced at the members raised on the plinth. There were five members, varying in height and not so much in hair colour; brown, black and blonde. The blonde-haired member with a microphone seemed to control everything and everyone. If he didn't get his way, things... happened. The sky would become even darker, a great roar would fill the vast wasteland and there would be a tear between the two worlds. Her dreams could simply walk into her world; she'd watched it happen and it happened too often.
One of them stepped forward and walked towards her, everyone stared intently. He was tall and thin, his guitar was strung across his chest and wore the same uniform as everyone else, but he carried it off better somehow; his shoes shinier, his jacket blacker and his trousers smarter. But the thing that almost directed people's attention immediately and the article that stood out most for Katrina, was his mass of curly brown hair.
Even the members on the platform stared.
"Why is that?" he asked calmly "Why are humans so bad?"
Her brain muttered words like 'rejection' and 'loathing' but the word that stuck out most, was the secret dagger that stabbed without pain and only when it was truly buried, killed.
"They call me a freak" she sounded pathetic and childish; she wanted to bury her face in the dust. He would laugh like the horrid leader and shove her away, but he simply smiled.
"We are all freaks here" he responded.
She wasn't sure of the tone of his voice, or if the way his smile look genuine or maybe it was the way the leader scoffed at the word. But she believed him.
"They- they call me a dreamer." She stuttered, staring at the floor and scuffling her feet, he leaned in and lifted her chin so they were inches apart and he whispered in her ear, words that she had wanted to hear her whole life.
"But that's exactly what makes you, you. You are unique Katrina, never forget that." He stared into her eyes and gave her another smile; he took her hand, squeezed it tight and held it above her head.
"The newest member!" He cried and the whole parade cheered. Katrina whooped with joy and squeezed his hand tighter, he winked.
The crowd was silent.
The sky turned even darker.
Her dreams were fading, the parade was disappearing and he was dissolved into dust, only the word 'Katrina!' echoed in her mind, yelled by the member as he evaporated into oblivion.
She wasn't sure how long she had dreamed for but she already felt drained. She looked at the corpse on the floor, his eyes were closed and his mouth half open; as if he had fallen asleep in the middle of the floor. He'd died peacefully, that was the thing about humans; they had almost beautiful deaths. Before they reach their demise, their brains release a bucket load of endorphins. Meaning that their brains tricked them into a blissful trance before they die, her victims die happy and there was something in her mind that made her content with that.
But for a vampire, that was only myth.
She grabbed her coat and sunglasses and strode outside, the sunlight burned slightly but she shrugged it off. She walked out of the open plan courtyard and towards reception. The woman sat behind the counter gave her a false, Barbie doll type smile.
"Hello sweetie, are you done?" Katrina grunted, not bothering to talk to this sour blood. "Okay, sign your name on the way out." Katrina signed her name as 'Sophia Rosa Garbitten'; never use your name in this business.
The woman had ignored her and was trying to flirt with a male member of the staff. Katrina signed the comment section as 'A wonderful change' and laughed to herself. She left the building just as the woman said "I am going to check on our new boy, see if he is alright."
She zipped up her grey coat, pushed her sunglasses up her nose and strolled out of the building and across the road, walking in the shade. She heard footsteps running towards her and heavy breathing, she tensed. Unimaginable thoughts went through her head, what if they had figured it out? What if there was CCTV footage? She'd always been careful but what if she messed up? She began to walk a little faster. The voice called out to her, she walked faster. Suddenly, the voice was catching up to her and they were fast. The figure grabbed her shoulders, she tensed.
"Katrina, don't be scared."
Katrina turned around and saw him, finally. He had big brown eyes, his mouth was curved to one side in a half smile, he wore skinny black jeans and a simple band t-shirt who she hadn't heard of. He was tall and slim and he panted "Man, you are fast to catch."
But he smiled, pushed his brown curly hair out of his eyes and said "Welcome to the Black Parade".