Dinner was going well, surprisingly so. The lady who sat across from me smiled warmly whenever our eyes locked, making my heart race. I fumbled to tell some jokes, and even with my awkward prose, she laughed with a hand covering her mouth. Wow, she really laughed.
I have always been shy, preferring to avoid interaction rather than take the risk of socialising. People scare me, their judging eyes pierce me deeply, and I feel ashamed of how I look, how I am.
Imagine my surprise then, when a brand new student joined my photography class, sitting in the vacant seat next to mine. Mary, she told me her name was, and I blushed at the interaction. She merely giggled, and we got back to work. After class, as I bustled out swiftly, Mary stopped me and asked if I'd like to show her around. She was new, after all. Even with the sweat beginning to bead above my brow, I accepted. After a few days of classes, I gathered the courage to ask Mary to go to dinner with me. She covered her smiling face and accepted. My heart felt like it would burst through my ribcage. I had never gotten a yes before.
So here we were, at the end of a dinner in which the woman across from me seemed genuinely interested in my little quirks, my awkward stumbling, my often judged face.
Mary lived only a short distance away from the restaurant, and asked me to walk her home. I grabbed my camera bag, then took off my coat and draped it over her shoulders as we left, and she leaned her head against my shoulder as we strolled. This touch... it warmed me against the cool winter night. I was not used to this closeness.
We walked through streets, turning into quieter and quieter areas. Mary walked ahead, her silhouette under the streetlight too beautiful to explain, so instead I decided to capture it. I took the camera from my bag and took a shot. Mary turned, smiling coyly. She asked if this was turning into a photo shoot, jokingly. I flushed red again, embarrassed.
Mary removed my coat from her shoulders slowly, posing delicately as I lifted my camera back up. The soft hue of the moonlight bathed her pale face, and I could not draw my attention away from the shots I was taking.
Mary stepped closer, keeping her gaze directly attuned to the camera. She began to smile as she moved, deftly stepping without a sound. Her eyes remained unblinking as she came to within two metres.
I lowered my camera to see Mary within touching distance, her eyes staring directly through me. She smiled, and I noticed for the first time how long her teeth were... how brightly sharp they glinted in the dark night.
She opened her mouth as if to talk, but all I noticed were rows of white knives set deep into her maw. A shrill scream emanated from within her, as she sunk the sharpness into my neck.