Things at the VUN were not as we feared it could be.It was still early in the game…and it was a game.Colin and I were waiting for the next wrinkle.The hard part was getting people up to speed on this vampire and venom thing.I was a vampire and I still didn’t understand all of it.Colin didn’t understand a lot either, he claimed.With the President now going to get reports from General Edwards, there was a newer feeling.We were less fearful of what was going to come.Yet, we knew there were going to problems could not even guess about.
I worked with our three Old Ones.They again were learning quickly.What things were called.There were things they had to learn.Time, for instance.They knew sunrise and sunset.The concept of a week, a month or year I had to explain more.They’d been alive for several thousand years.This would take time.I didn’t know what they could remember…exactly.They remembered us, but…concepts of the week month and years would be a challenge.
Stan sent me a message he wanted to see me in the lab.I went down to the lab to see Stan working on three devices we used with the Delkenzie program to translate.
“Hi, Stan.”I greeted my friend.
Stan looked up and smiled.“I think I have worked out something that will help with Repetate, Iustina and Ralph!”He held up one of the devices.It looked the same.“I got the idea from one of the movies.”He chuckled then looked mockingly smug.“I liked the movie Congo.”He grinned.“You said you didn’t like it because of the clichés.”
“The whole movie was a cliché!”I insisted.“A lost city that was there thousands of years has a volcano that blows the day that group arrives!It was cliché!Come on.I hate those!”
Stan nodded with a chuckle.“Whatever.”He held the device up.“What I liked was the setup that Amy, that gorilla, used to talk!”
I looked at the device.“You created something to do that with the Old Ones?”I asked.
Stan smiled.“I think so.”He shook the device.“This should work.It has a scanner to see what they sign.Using a database that will record what the signs are for each and give verbal interpretation!”
“That could work.”I agreed.“They do communicate more with expression.They can convey puzzlement and even understanding that way.”
Stan nodded.“That’s what the scanner is for.It will scan their faces and signs and…” he grudgingly nodded.“It may take some time, but I think that can be used with the signs and the facial expressions!”
I grabbed Stan in a tight hug.“This is great!!”I said feeling excited about this.
Stan didn’t break away, but held a device up.“Each of the devices need to be told who they are monitoring and doing the interpretation for, but it should work.”Stan insisted.
“Stan!You are a GENIUS!!”
“Tell me that after it works.”Stan chuckled.“I even programmed Buddy with individual voices for each to know which is…” he did air quotes, “talking.Giving them their own voice!”
I shook my head.“Whatever we’re paying you, isn’t enough.”
“You want me to insist you do?”Stan grinned.“How much would that be?”
“I don’t know, but it wouldn’t be enough.”I hugged him tightly again.
Stan hugged me back.“You are so appreciative.I wanted to work here.”He said letting me go.“Ruben never hugged me.”
“His loss.”I hugged him again.“Our gain.”
I took devices to the Old Ones’ room.I was greeted upon my return and I will say one thing.They were humans and I know there are women with the same fascination, but males just seemed to get more infatuated with gadgets.They were trying to figure them out.
“These will help us communicate.”I told them as they were looking at the modified translators.“It will give you a voice.”Yes, they communicated very well using expressions.All three looked with expressions saying, “how?” “This device…once we get it working correctly will be able to read what I see and it will give you a voice.”Again, their expressions said it was unbelievable.Then I thought about my understanding.I understood them!Why?I smiled as I realized, because I knew them.I was getting to know them better over time.Colin and I often communicated without using words because our years together.I wondered how much more I would understand these Old Ones after a few years.I attached the straps to the devices and hung them as I activated each for each of them, telling Buddy which one he was reading.“Now, let’s try a simple hello.”
They all signed hello and I got three distinct, “Hello.”Their reaction to this was startled amazement on each of them.
“Is anyone out there?”I asked to the sky to see if someone was observing us.
“Of course.”Colin’s voice came.“I’ll be right in.”
I smiled knowing he was being Colin and watching over me.It took a minute or two before Colin entered the room.
“Hello, Colin.”The three greeted.
Colin grinned at them as he walked in to stand next to me.“Hello!”
“Want funny Tom and Jerry.”Iustina said as he knew the signs for that.
I chuckled.“You had Tom and Jerry!You’ve seen them all.”
“Not in a while.”I said and nodded.They may not know what that meant.“Many sunsets ago.”
Iustina frowned.“Bad.”He said to tell me that was too bad.
“Bugs Bunny?”Repetate asked.
“Also, many sunsets ago.”
“New cartoons?”Ralph asked.
“Sure, there are thousands of them.”I grinned and typed on my laptop.
“Wow.”Colin said sitting on the floor with me again right behind, practically no air between us.He loved me!“This is great!”He said looking over my shoulder.
“And we owe it all to Stan.”I chuckled waving at the translators.“He came up with this.”
“Now, I can understand them.”Colin said.
“Colin Devon favorite.”Iustina said.
“Devon Colin favorite.”Repetate added.
Here were things not easily explained by expression.“You want to know?”I asked.Again, asking a question about a question wasn’t much help.“Colin is my favorite person, yes.”
“Devon is my favorite person.”Colin added putting his arms around my middle.
I sighed.“This is going to be difficult, Colin.They will have to develop concepts for me to explain things to them.”
Colin grinned.“You are doing so well with them, baby.”He hugged me.
I smiled holding his arms tighter around me.I looked at the three.“Do you understand the word, mate?”I was answered with blank looks.“This will take a while.”I sighed again.
“You’re doing something I don’t think that’s ever been done with them since they were born.”Colin said.“They had mothers at least.I wonder if they taught anything to them.”
“That was so long ago.”I said.“I don’t know what they remember.I don’t know how to ask yet.Will they be able to answer?”I shrugged.
“Iustina Devon friends.”Iustina said using signs he knew.
I nodded.“That’s right.We are friends.Repetate and Devon friends.Ralph and Devon friends.”
“Mate.”Iustina said with a questioning expression.“Colin Devon mate.”
I nodded.“Maybe they can understand it.Colin Devon mate.”
I lowered my head and shook it.“Colin, I can’t explain the term mate as a noun yet, I don’t want to explain the verb, that would be impossible right now.Biology!?”Telling him that would also be impossible to explain.I nodded.“Repetate, Iustina, Ralph friends Devon.Colin mate Devon.”
Colin ducked his head behind my back chuckling as said as if they couldn’t hear.“Frequently.”
“They have great hearing, Colin.”I reminded him grinning.
Colin brought his head up again.“Yes, but from what you said before, they read expressions.I’m sure my meaning about what I said is loud and clear.”He said kissing me on the neck behind my ear.
“They’re talking now?”We were all startled as we heard the voice over the speakers.It was the General’s voice.“I thought they couldn’t.”
Colin and I looked at the window even though we couldn’t see through the glass.
Colin didn’t move, though.He remained as he was.
“They can’t naturally, but they can communicate.We just need to translate that.”I said.“They talk now because of these devices and the Delkenzie program for languages.”I pointed at the devices.“It’s still brand spanking new!Developed just now by our other genius on staff.”
“Another vampire?”The general's voice suddenly asked by way of the speakers in a way questioning that had this genius was a vampire.
“No, General.”I smiled.“He’s a former FBI agent.He’s still very human.”
“General.”We heard George say.“We are trying to solve the vampire problem.We need to find out more about them to see if we can figure that out.”
“I want a report immediately.”The general barked.
“Really, Scott?”I heard Kevin’s voice now.“They aren’t your men.They’re not even in the military.Try asking them, instead of giving orders.”
“Sorry.”The general said and we heard the sigh.“Please.Can I speak with you?”
I smiled at Colin.“This is going to be an interesting cooperation.”
Colin nodded.“The key is cooperation.They aren’t in control…money wise.We need their understanding and help to do things that need to be done.We can’t do it easily without them.We need permission for things and no questions.”He stood up and then helped me up.
Going into the corridor we were directed toward a conference room.Entering the conference room was saw Dr. Dexter Harris, Dr. Kevin Curtis, George, John and General Edwards.I had wondered about Kevin’s referral to the general having three stars, when he only had two when he was here last.Now, he did have three stars.I had to go through the “be my little general” in my head.Brigadier, major, lieutenant and general were what that saying kept straight.He was a Lieutenant General now.
“Sorry about that just now.”The general said pointed at the other room with a reluctant smile.“I am used to working with the military.”
Colin nodded with a light chuckle.“I don’t think we can pass the physical, general.”
The general shook his head.“This is all so…” he struggled with a word, “odd.”He waved again at the other room.“Yet, there are three creatures in there that…I can’t explain.”He shrugged helplessly.“I’ve seen the research, I’ve seen the samples.I can’t offer any other explanation.”
Kevin grinned at the general pointing at his uniform.“And he’s now an even bigger pain in ass now.”
The general looked instantly angry at Kevin, but his face couldn’t hold it.He pointed at Kevin with a narrowed eye.“It’s a good thing I like you, Kevin.You just love to push my buttons.”
Kevin shrugged not worried.“Because your buttons are so visible!And you are so easy to irritate.”
I smiled at their little display of pretty close friendship.Just like Stan and Mark!I wondered if…nah, it wasn’t my business.It could just be a good friendship.
The general looked at Colin, George, John and me.“I was given the promotion by order of the President.No one but a four-star general can counterman my orders.There are only twelve of those.”
“And the President.”Kevin reminded the general.
The general frowned.“Right.”He scowled.“The way it will go, I spoke to the President.Dr. Harris will be staffed here.Dr. Curtis will be here on occasion.”
“I have other things to do.Just like you do, Scott.”Kevin shrugged.
The general ignored him.“You will report…” he stopped.“Sorry, please report to me.I will pass what information you have to the President.I will need reports weekly, if not daily.”
Colin nodded.“We understand.However, we were looking to make the President or whomever aware of a threat that has gone on for thousands of years.”
I nodded, like I said, Colin and I had been together enough that I knew what he was saying.“I warned Colin the military involvement here had a huge chance the government will try to take over.We need the authority to get things accomplished.We aren’t asking for one cent in federal monies.”
Colin sat back putting his arm around my shoulder.“That’s right.”
“But you will need personnel!Military personnel.Those people are paid by the United States.”The general protested not understanding.
“Why?”Colin asked.“Those three in there are kept out of circulation and we have rounded up dozens here in Manhattan and are going out to other cities in the United States and other countries.”Colin sat forward on at the table.“What we need is knowledge of what we want to accomplish and the freedom to do it.”
I watched John lean over and say something to George who nodded and John walk out.
“You need armed men here!”The general stated firmly.“For security!”
“They are armed.”George said.“My fiancé is getting what they are armed with to show you.This facility is protected.No vampire will escape.They would be killed.”
It took a few minutes before John came back, I smiled at the gun he was carrying.My eyebrows rose at the new gun.
George smiled at John as he sat down beside him.George looked at the general. “Tell him.”He jutted his head at John.“It’s your genius that did this.”
John smiled at George and looked at the general.“Out in the corridor and even in the room we keep the vampires.”John began.“We have ultraviolet lighting.So is this gun.”
“It’s a Supersoaker!”The general stated incredibly waving his hands at the “toy” John had.“My son has one!”
“It’s supposed to look that way.”John smiled.“It’s less threatening this way.”He pointed on the gun.“Here is a power source used to shine the light.”He turned it on and pointed it at the general who flinched, but stopped when nothing happened.
“What sort of weapon is that!?”The general asked.
“One that works very well on vampires.”I chuckled at John.“You combine the sun gun with the serum gun!?” I shook my head.“George is right, you are a genius.”I looked at Colin.“We have a lot of those here.”
“Yes!I combined them better and the delivery system is improved.”John nodded smiling.
“What!?”The general balked.“What good is it?It’s a toy!”
“Scott.”Kevin began softly shaking his head.“A vampire can’t be out in daylight.That gun shoots intense rays that repel vampires.Inside it are little pellets that contain this serum.Fired at a vampire, it slows them down.”He looked at George.“I assume the lights inside have the same thing.”
George nodded.“Only much more intense.It will be like a vampire is outside at noon.He will die and dissolve in minutes.”He looked at the general.“There are weapons, but held by agents of the FBI helping us.We needed their expertise and credentials.We have Mark Goddard, Chuck Slaughter, and Shelly Vargas from the FBI and worked with us for years now.One, Stan Martin left because he became engaged to one of the other agents. He’s the best computer…anything there is.He works for us now. They would be reassigned because Stan and Mark are getting married.”The general was startled again hearing that bit of news.
“We have only used guns a few times.”Colin explained.“Each time they were vampires.Bullets work on vampires, too.There was no evidence left behind.No bodies as they burn in sunlight!”
“Taking over is not going to happen!”I said to the general firmly.“We have the protection.We have people here that know what they’re doing.”I shook my head.“I’m sorry, general, but you don’t.Not with this.”
“We let you know to help us get to places without all the questions.”Colin nodded.“We told you who and what we are.We aren’t hiding anything.The President will need to be ready for the other countries to call him to see this is real.”
“How do I report to the President if no one’s here to make the report?”The general asked.
“We’ll send reports.”Colin assured.“We need your support, not your man power.”
Kevin chuckled and all but patted the general.“It’ll be alright, Scott.”He smiled.
I smiled at this.Maybe there was more than professionals working together.The President would not have been pleased how common it was.Go us!! We really were everywhere!!!