The Sighting

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An hour later Mackenzie and Julian were in the back of her mother's SUV while her father described the importance of safety equipment while on the job. Julian absentmindedly picked at a string on his jeans and Mackenzie stared out the window at a never-ending line of trees. The trip to the nearest town took forty-five minutes to an hour, and they'd only left fifteen minutes ago. Yet Mackenzie already wanted to tuck and roll straight the hell out of the car, damning all consequences.

The entire situation she was in was too awkward to be real. It didn't have to do with her parents much at all. Her mother had been completely fine with Julian coming along, and her father approved of it completely after the first thing Julian told him was how nice the back yard looked. No, they were fine, but Mackenzie and Julian just could not make conversation for the life of them. Every time each tried, it fizzled out within mere sentences. Mackenzie knew it wasn't that they had nothing to talk about. She had a million things to say, just none of them could even be whispered in front of her parents. They could not know about the supernatural. Julian had said as much back at the house before they left.

Maybe the silence between them would have been less uncomfortable if it wasn't obvious that both of them wanted to start a conversation. But they both strained for subjects, as lord knows Mackenzie only had one on her mind.

Her dad stopped talking from the front seat and her mom spared a look back at her daughter and her new mysterious undead acquaintance. Mackenzie could tell that her mother sensed the need for a conversation starter but Mackenzie met her eyes pointedly, denying her any involvement. Mackenzie loved her mother, but was worried what subjects would come up if she began discussing things with Julian.

So her mom turned back to the front seat, just in time for her oblivious father to try to make conversation with Mackenzie.

"I recorded one of those rerun episodes of that Buffy show you like Mack," He said. Julian raised an eyebrow at her and she muttered some form of thanks to her dad.

And then an idea hit her.

"I was just thinking of that show the other night," Mackenzie said, looking straight at Julian.

"Alert the media, Mackenzie's thinking about a tv show," Her dad chuckled. Her mom smiled at the car window.

"Ha, ha. Anyways, I was thinking about the vampires in it and comparing them to the vampires from other pieces of fiction. Mostly I was comparing them to these vampires that can walk in the sun and be changed after death. They're from these books called Dusk," Mackenzie said, naming the fake vampire series from My Babysitter's a Vampire. Julian was meeting her gaze with confusion, so Mackenzie continued.

"I was really just thinking of how different they are, but I haven't read all of the Dusk books, so I couldn't really make any significant comparisons besides the sun and the transition to the undead," Mackenzie explained, watching as Julian understood where she was going with it. She didn't think there really was any information given about Dusk vampires on the show, so she hoped he realized what she meant to talk about.

Her parents had gone back to their regular conversation shortly after she started talking about the fake Dusk series. They knew her obsessive bullshit and knew how to tune it out by now. Mackenzie couldn't blame them, she was always trying to analyze things thoroughly, usually out loud. It was probably very annoying.

"I've actually read Dusk, so I could help you with comparisons," Julian prompted with a smile. Mackenzie thought for a second, then went ahead with the conversations.

"Well the vampires in Buffy have super strength," Mackenzie said, her voice trailing off.

"In Dusk the more animalistic they are, the more inhuman powers they have. If they're turned later the more strength and speed they'd have. None of the vampires are too much stronger than humans. Just enough to overpower most humans who aren't properly prepared," Julian explained. Mackenzie digested the information with some uneasiness. Not only were inhuman and evil vampires real, but they'd also easily overpower any humans they set their sights on.

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